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10 Ways To Achieve Your Goals Even When You’re Bored

10 Ways To Achieve Your Goals Even When You’re Bored

Starting an activity for the first time is perhaps the most fun you can ever experience; it’s new, completely out of the ordinary, exciting to take part in, and is hardly ever boring. But there will ultimately come a time where that excitement begins to wear off and the shine is no longer what it used to be when you first started.

You’re now going through the motions. Perhaps reaching a competent level and no longer feeling a sense of challenge with what you’re doing. This is something I’ve experienced one too many times in my own personal journey when doing new activities.

You’ve reached a stage that Seth Godin calls “The Dip.” Things aren’t progressing, nor are they diminishing. It’s gruelling and ultimately frustrating. It’s at this stage where you’re at a crossroad, and deciding whether to push through or to give up.

So how do you overcome this?

Here are 10 techniques I’ve personally used to keep going when things were boring and frustrating.

1) Push yourself to work when the work isn’t easy or fun to do.

The most common reason I failed in the past was because I failed to “take the first step” when it came to doing what I set out to do. I underestimated the power of momentum and instead focused on the end goal, which made me realize how overwhelming it all was. Instead, focus on what you need to do in the present to get the ball rolling.

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If it’s to hit the gym and do your daily workouts, focus on simply packing your gym equipment and leaving your house, then entering your car and starting the engine. Before you know it, momentum will occur and you will have no other choice but to keep moving forward.

2) Focus on the process and not the end goal.

While goals are important, focusing purely on the final outcome will always leave you feeling stressed and frustrated. Yet we simply fail to realize that getting there doesn’t require us to make a giant leap, but to simply take things one step at a time.

Break down what you need to do for that day and start working at it. A year from now, you will look back at the work you did and realize how far you’ve gone.

3) Develop rituals and commit to them daily.

We are the sum of our daily habits‒this is something I never quite understood until recently. I never realized that habits could apply to your working activities and not just to bathroom etiquette, like brushing your teeth or washing your face.

In short, your success is defined simply by what you do on a daily basis and not just how you do it. Figure out what needs to be done daily in order to move you forward and make it a daily ritual. In time, this will turn into a habit that will simply be unable for you to stop doing.

4) Set something up to make you accountable.

If you find it quite hard to push yourself, set something up that will make it inevitable.

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If your goal is to wake up early, try something like parking your car in a “no parking zone,” which will force you to wake up at 6:30 in order to move it since you know that a parking attendant will give you a ticket if you fail to do so. Or try something simple, like paying a friend $100 for failing to reach your goal on a given week.

Accountability is very powerful and will help you develop motivation if you seem to be lacking it in the early stages.

5) Make a list of benefits that you will gain from doing it.

When doing our daily activities, we sometimes forget why we’re doing it in the first place, which is what drove us to develop the will and drive to pursue it.

Write down all of the benefits you will gain from doing what you’re doing and have it stuck on your wall where you see it in front of you on a daily basis.

6) Make a list of pains you will experience if you don’t do it.

If #5 doesn’t work, write a list of consequences you will face if you don’t do it. Will not doing it make you feel overweight and unhealthy? Will you still be stuck at your dead-end job for another 5-10 years? Will you still stay single and alone for a year?

Use the pain as strength to help you push through. Nothing worthwhile is easy to do, and sometimes, it can be extremely boring as well.

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7) Have a higher purpose that motivates you to keep going.

Besides having goals, you need to have a higher reason to doing what you’re doing that goes above and beyond anything financial or personal.

Perhaps it’s to leave a legacy behind so that others can follow in your footsteps, or to change common misconceptions and redefine norms for the better. Or maybe it’s to end world hunger by providing a beacon of hope for others to follow in order to make it happen.

Have a reason higher than yourself that makes you come alive. A purpose that’s in true alignment to you will provide you with a defined life goal that will make you feel obliged to follow.

8) Make your goals public.

There is nothing more motivating than to tell other people about what you’re going to do. The more people you announce it to, the more powerful it will be; it will force you to take action, since you’ll know that if you don’t do it, you will be branded as a failure or someone who doesn’t stay true to their word.

Set yourself a challenge to announce your goals on all of your social media accounts and put a target date to have it all achieved.

9) Set more challenging tasks in order to push yourself further.

If you’ve been doing something for long enough. There will come a point where you will reach comfort and familiarity with what you’re doing. It will seem monotonous and robotic to the point where you’re no no longer thinking about the motions.

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It’s at this crucial stage in your development where you know you need to set new challenges in order to push through and reach the next level. There is never a complete level of mastery in whatever it is you do and there is always another level.

Create a list of higher and more challenging goals for yourself that will make things more fun and interesting again. Perhaps you could try taking more advanced classes or setting higher target numbers in your sales job, for example.

10) Mix up how you do things to rekindle the fun factor.

Doing the same things over and over again is never fun and can lead to boredom and frustration. Try doing the same things in different ways in order to create variety and inspire creativity.

Mix up your training plans, work on your activities in a different way or perhaps change it up completely!

The more I’ve experienced boredom, the more I’ve realized how much of a gift it is. You have an opportunity now to try something different and to think outside the box, an opportunity to develop even bigger character and perseverance when things aren’t compelling, and a quality, which very few people have, that will serve you greatly moving forward.

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

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