Keep it simple. It seems obvious advice, but it can really help you to halt the overwhelm and anxiety that may have developed during the pandemic and all the changes it brought. In this month's newsletter, we discussed how many will have let their goals and intentions for 2021 slip, but that simplicity could keep you on track. In this blog post, we're going to be looking at the wide-ranging benefits that come from keeping things simple when it comes to your goals.
1. Something Else To Focus On
With everything that's going on in the world right now, it can consume every moment of our thoughts. We can then find our anxiety and stress levels building.
Think back to the beginning of the pandemic – did you find yourself glued to the news, desperate for that day's figures, and watching all the daily updates from the government? If so, you were not alone.
But focussing on these sorts of things tends to impact negatively on our wellbeing. Having simple, straightforward goals can give you something else to focus on – something positive to be thinking about and doing.
2. Recognising And Celebrating All Progress
Sometimes, that mean voice inside our heads can tell us that we're not getting anywhere – that we've made no difference or progress. But this is just a story that our minds create. Even worse, these stories are not based on facts or the truth.
When we keep things simple, we focus on the next small step rather than looking ahead at big goals. When this happens, we start to notice the progress we are making. We recognise the little things that we achieve along the way and then have an opportunity to celebrate and appreciate them helping to motivate and inspire us to keep going.
Think of it in terms of your child learning to read – you don't just recognise the moment where they're suddenly able to read most books. There are many milestones along the way such as grasping new phonic sounds, adding a new word to their vocabulary, going up a reading level and so on.
Yet as adults, we give ourselves a much harder time. Keep your goals simple and start recognising each small step and milestone. It will allow you to feel a sense of accomplishment and pride.
3. Increasing Your Motivation
But that's not the only benefit of recognising the small achievements. As humans, we are motivated either by moving away from pain or moving towards pleasure. Each time that you achieve something, however small or simple it might be, you get that dopamine hit that makes you feel good, and you move towards an outcome you've set that will give you pleasure.
It's a bit like the analogy of pushing a large rock – it can be slowing going at first, but once you've got some momentum, it becomes much easier to continue moving forward. Simple goals allow you to build that momentum.
When that happens, you also start to feel more in control of your life, and we could all do with a bit more of that right now.
Let me know in the comments – how are you getting on with the goals you set in January? Do they need simplifying? Are you recognising the small steps you're taking?
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