I'm embarrassed to say that I made a 2023 image board for my 2023 goals and I am STILL planning to print it... as in, I lived 12 months "meaning" to take action on my goals and there it still sits in my Canva cart - unprinted and unused.
It's not like I didn't do anything last year. I did a LOT... but did it align with what I wanted for my year? -- It could have been better.
How humiliating that my new years "resolution" for 2024 could be to "print last years resolutions". HA! - that's hilarious and disgusting to me all in the same sentence.
This brings me to todays question - What are we tracking? They say that what you track grows.... So are we tracking the habits we want to grow, or are we just living our days?
Unfortunately, it’s easy to accidentally fall into bad habits. Fortunately, better habits are *literally* a CHOICE away.
If you haven’t read James Clear’s Atomic Habits book, I highly suggest it. In it, he unpacks the power of identifying as the person you’d like to be - and then making habits that support that identity.
For example, he explains that you can identify as “a person who works out every day” and then you choose the teeny tiniest ways to prove it to yourself every day. - Like putting on your running shoes… ONLY. I thought he was all stuff and nonsense until I started applying this in my life in different areas. When you prove something to your brain, you’re teaching it to see things that it couldn’t see before. “I’m a person who works out every day - and look at that… my running shoes are on”. After you master the teeny tiny habit, you take the next step. Not only do you have your running shoes on every day, but you might as well go for a walk because you’re all ready… and just like that - you’re a person who works out every day.
In my situation, I my identity was off. I didn't identify as someone who takes action even if things aren't perfect.... I identified as a perfectionist who waited all year thinking I would have time to perfect my image board and get it printed.
The only problem, is that perfection has no finish line! Have you ever experienced that?
As soon as you think you've arrived - the finish line moves - and you're not quite done. People can go years living this way... Just like I did in this last year.
I've heard business coaches encourage people to aim for "C" work... Nothing could be harder for the perfectionist in me!
My insides scream against such an idea - all the while keeping me stuck with that moving finish line
I have a quote on my fridge that says, "The finish line is not the win. Showing up every day is the win."... Clearly I need to tattoo that on my arm because I still get stuck in perfectionism without action.
What if "winning" in 2024 looked like showing up - with teeny tiny daily habits - rather than looking for a future perfect finish line?
Ann Voskamp's quote hits me between the eyes every time I read it:
She says: “Life is Pain — and you get to choose: either the Pain of Discipline or the Pain of Disappointment.”
Read that again!
“Life is Pain — and you get to choose: either the Pain of Discipline or the Pain of Disappointment.”
How is this WOW and OW all in the same moment for me?!
The beauty is that we get to CHOOSE our pain!
Strategically working on habits is NOT easy….
But purposeful life- building is surely easier than running around trying to catch a moving finish line!
Someone once said to obsess about your inputs rather than your outcomes.
I think sometimes we obsess about our outcomes and forget that inputs even exist. The only trouble is, THE ONLY WAY TO CHANGE OUR OUTCOMES IS BY CHANGING OUR INPUTS!!!!!!!!
So, let’s take a look at those inputs this year.
Rather than throwing out semi unachievable new year’s resolutions, what if we just picked 3 new year's teeny tiny input/habits? And then what if we tracked them?
“They” say that what is tracked grows… So, what do you want to grow this year?
Do you want to be a more patient mom? What’s a TINY (I’m talking itty bitty) habit you can do towards that goal? Maybe try and smile at your kids 5 times a day - and then TRACK it.
Want to be healthier? How about an itty-bitty habit of TRACKING your water intake?
Want to be a better wife? How about an itty-bitty habit of saying thank you to your husband every day and then TRACKING it to watch the habit grow.
Want to have a less cluttered home? How about an itty-bitty habit of TRACKING 5 minutes of decluttering every day?
Want to have a better marriage? How about an itty-bitty habit of TRACKING 5 minutes of praying together every day?
Want to start a new business venture? How about TRACKING an itty-bitty habit of listening to something like the EntreLeadership podcast and taking some notes once a week?
Whomever you want to be, remember that it is made up of your tiny little habits that you are forming this MOMENT.
Lucky for you, you just read a whole blog about being intentional… which is a terrific habit. Good work. Now let’s figure out how to make a habit out of it ;)
WOW!!! You're *obviously* awesome because you just took the time to read a whole blog about intentionality. Good work, you!
How can I help you create awesome habits?
If you don't know me, I'm Liz Gerdes, and I'd like to be your cheerleader.
My husband and I are dairy farmers in SE MN and friends to anyone who is interested.
I help moms feel awesome about what they feed their families by providing then with fresh raw milk!
Visit gerdesfreshfarm.com or follow me on Facebook @gerdesfreshfarm for more info.
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