EDITORIAL: Renew your focus
A new day, week, month or year each provide a new opportunity for positive change, renewed focus and success. There is something magical in the start of a new year and, as was the case on the 1st of this month, the start of a new decade. It does not matter the type of goal a person has, it could be starting a new business, fitness goals, professional growth, academic qualification or even a new hobby.
It can be very difficult to put in the work necessary to be successful in working on your self , nothing worth doing is easy. However, the boost associated with working towards a goal in a new year could help push persons out of progress blocking ruts. When one is consistently working towards a goal the body and mind can become bored and tired with the routine and progress may begin to slow down. A change
in the routine or one’s method of working may be particularly useful at such a time.
It is easy to give up on fitness goals quickly because these goals require total lifestyle changes that can only be successful if the decision is made each day to eat healthier food options and to incorporate exercise into your routine. There are some persons who love exercise and have few problems with sticking to their training plans. However, for others, exercise is hard work and the motivation quickly drains away. Be sure to find a gym with trainers or a work out buddy to help keep you on track with your fitness. Recording workouts and food intake can add a feeling of accomplishment to the process and give a clear indication of progress.
Academic goals may be a bit simpler to stick with but just as difficult to achieve. The initial step of enrolling and paying for a programme can force a person to follow through with academic plans. However, the persistent work to obtain the best possible grades is a sacrifice that can be well worth it when the goal is eventually achieved. Approach each assessment with fresh energy and excitement, giving as much effort to the task as possible.
Professional growth is a bit more complicated especially in present day Barbados where many qualified persons remain unemployed and underemployed. Even with consistent hard work at times such growth appears impossible. It is important to have confidence and market one’s self adequately to achieve professional growth. Unfortunately such growth does not always come with the desired pay increase but can allow for exposure to new areas in one’s field or increased on-the-job learning opportunities.
No matter the type of goal maintaining motivation is necessary. Do research into the ways other people have successfully reached these goals but bare in mind that each individual and each set of circumstances is different. The speeds and levels of success may therefore vary from person to person with the same amount of work being done. An interesting trend is the use of vision boards; which allows for a physical reminder of your goals. They require visualization of the goal and artistic portrayal to be kept some place where it can be viewed on a daily basis.
Finally, avoid burn out by taking the necessary rest periods to keep yourself alert and your ideas fresh.
So, as we move steadily towards the end of January, do not despair if you are off to a slow start with your goals. Renew your focus and gather your energy and pursue your goals head on.