Spirit, Mind and Body
by Ken Ralston
Hey NW fitness athletes. So glad to be here in NW Fitness Mag bringing you what will hopefully be motivational articles in Spirit, Mind and Body.
This month I want to focus on a very important subject especially this time of year – What do you do when you “fail” in your goals? First off I want to suggest we redefine how we view failure. I actually don’t even like the word failure and have virtually stricken it from my vocabulary. We’ve all heard the Michael Jordan quotes of how many shots he missed, games he lost or how many elections Abe Lincoln lost before he won the big one. The truth is that successful people fail more than anybody else. Michael said “I have failed over and over and over again…and that is why I succeed.” The key is that they use failure to build success. We all stumble, but failure only becomes permanent when we quit! Galatians 6:9 ( TMSG ) 9So let’s not allow ourselves to get fatigued while doing good. At the right time we will harvest a good crop if we don’t give up, or quit.
Here are some keys to avoiding failure:
1. Look at failure differently. I like to use the word setback instead of failure. And a setback is just a setup for a comeback. Don’t dwell on the setback or it just grows bigger and bigger in your mind and will eventually become insurmountable. Analyze the setback; learn what went wrong and MOVE ON, applying what you learned so you don’t have the same experience in the future.
2. Change your perception. If failure has somewhat defined you and you view yourself as unable to achieve you goals, I want to challenge you to do something. Make a list of 10 positive things going on in your life, things that you like about yourself, successes that you have had. Then hang that baby up on your mirror or fridge and every time you see the list take one of them and meditate on it. You can change your perception of yourself and convince yourself you are a champion!
3. Stay with the goal. I really believe that people are too quick to adjust the goal coming off a failure. But I say to just admit you blew it, move on but STAY WITH THE GOAL!
4. Honest self evaluation. Do you know what the most important part of directions is – the starting point. One time we were given Google directions to a birthday party but instead of typing in Arlington, WA as the starting point they had typed in Arlington, VA! Can anybody guess how that one small typing error made those directions unusable? Goals are direction steps to get us to our ultimate destination but we need an accurate starting position! We’re all legends in our own minds sometimes and we think we are starting at a different place then we actually are. The problem is then our directions can’t take us where we need to go. We need an honest self evaluation to have an accurate starting point.
5. End the pity party! When we have a setback, it’s easy to fall into feeling sorry for ourselves and have a pity party. Say you fall off your diet by eating a donut – all your dreams and goals come crashing down right there in the parking lot of Krispy Kreme! Then starts the pity party. But the problem is, what does every party need? A cake! So now you’ve gone from a donut to a cake. Then of course a bigger party, bigger cake. You can see how this progression grows. End the pity party before the baker even starts mixing up the cake!
6. Refocus your vision. Vision is a movie playing on the big screen of your imagination. What is the end result when you achieve your goals, what does it look like? You’ve got to be able to see it! Proverbs 29:18 says “without vision, people cast of restraint.” Seeing the end result is what restrains you to what it takes to achieve the goal. If you’re running in the Boston marathon, you better be able to see yourself crossing that finish line or you will never get there. The one thing I can guarantee you is that times will get tough. Seeing the finish line is what will carry you thru those tough times!
7. Evaluate your relationships. I received an email this month a couple weeks after our annual goal setting seminar. It said “Ken, I already failed in my goals.” Because of what this guy’s goal was, I wanted to ask him who he was with when he failed, but did not feel I could because I don’t know him that well. However this is an incredible piece to the goal achievement puzzle. Proverbs 13:20 says “Walk with the wise and become wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.” I say it this way – “friends are like elevators – some take you up and some take you down.” I’m not saying to dump your anti goal friends, but I do encourage you to analyze who you are spending the majority of your time with.
8. And the biggest one of this list and really the only barrier that can truly keep you from achieving your goals is easy to recognize because it sits on your neck between your ears! Your mind and your thinking determine your achievement. Over the next few months we will be discussing the power of the mind and how it affects your future. Until then, train hard, stay committed and LIVE YOUR BEST LIFE!
(Connect with me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ken.ralston)