Goal Setting: Plan around Failure. WHAT?!!
Alright, it’s going to happen...When you set a goal, you will meet both success and failure along the way. When we slip up, we can feel out of control, helpless, discouraged, and the voices of self-doubt and self-criticism get turned up. BUT! If you plan for your failures, you stand a chance of not being completely derailed by your reactions to those inevitable slip-ups.
First, you can identify and accept your weaknesses, and put counter-measures in place to ensure success. Let’s say the weakness is sugar cravings in the afternoon; make sure you have healthy snacks to tide you over and help control your blood sugar like an apple, or a couple of dates and almonds. Simple. Or maybe your after-work commute disrupts your momentum for getting to the gym. See if you can sign up for a gym close to your workplace, skip the rush-hour commute and hit the gym first.
Second, for those times that you actually do miss the target, have a mitigation plan in place. Maybe you have a day of food indulgence. You can plan ahead to have a “day after menu” of cleansing, light healthy foods that will restore balance to you body after a day of heavy eating. Rather than dwelling on what can’t be undone, you will have actions steps in place. Maybe your goal is to workout at the gym Monday, Wednesday and Friday. You’re exhausted on a Wednesday and just can’t do it. You could switch to Thursday and try going to the gym two days in a row. Always have a plan B!
So, actually you’re not planning to fail in the bigger picture, you are just accepting that failure is part of the process. Finding work-arounds by anticipating and preparing for slip-ups, knowing your weaknesses, and arming yourself with a strategy for staying the course will allow you to be most successful in reaching your goal.