We’re quickly making our way through January, which means all of us resolution-setters are well underway with our New Year’s goals. Right? Well, whether you set out to accomplish a host of resolutions or you just have a few goals in mind, you may find that sticking your goals can be challenging. And while roadblocks often get in the way and easily steer us off course, with a little guidance and support we all have the power to achieve what we put our minds to.

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It’s been shown that an ENCOURAGING AND SUPPORTIVE NETWORK IS CRITICAL TO REACHING YOUR GOALS. Speaking for myself and on behalf of all the Gumsaba coaches, we are here to be a positive source of support and encouragement for each of you! Whatever your goals may be we want all of you to succeed, especially when it comes to your health and wellness. So, to help guide you on your journey here is a list of unorthodox techniques for achieving your goals – courtesy of The Huffington Post and Tad Waddington Ph.D., CEO of Lasting Contribution and author of Return on Learning.

1. Start out extremely small.

Like, miniscule. “A lot of people don’t really conceive of the problem the right way,” he tells The Huffington Post. Normally, our strategy for accomplishing a goal is to just go for it, he says. This usually leads to failure. Rather than jumping in cannonball style, Waddington says a toe-dipping approach could be one secret to sticking with it this year.

“Activation energy,” or the force that gets the ball rolling, is key. If your ambition is to shed some pounds (which is the most popular pledge, year after year), spend the first week in January exercising for one minute. “Your capabilities and your goals have to match,” Wadding explains. If you’re entirely out of shape, your plan to run a 5K by January 15 is near-destined to hit the skids. Activate your resolution by starting with something you absolutely know you can do. This “solid foundation,” as Waddington puts it, will help you follow through with next week’s challenge, which should just be a pinch more demanding than the week before. Keep up this pattern — increase the difficulty, but only by a little — and you will see results.

2. Make a “To-Don’t” list.
When thinking about the year ahead, you might be quick to think about what you do want. You do want to volunteer. You do want to cut down on your drinking. But at what cost? Consider your “To-Don’t” list; this will help you slow down, start small and be more realistic about your goals. Here’s a silly way to think about it: Let’s say the goal is to lose 10 pounds, and fast. There’s a simple solution — just chop off your leg. It’s one guaranteed way to shed the weight. It’s probable, however, that you don’twant to amputate a leg in 2015. Be sure when setting your goals, you don’t compromise crucial elements of your life (like your leg) for the sake of instant gratification.

3. Don’t shout your resolution from the roof tops.
Waddington doesn’t suggest making public resolution declarations, whether on Facebook or IRL, because you’ll inevitably feel crummy. “It is almost impossible not to slip,” he says, and the moment you feel you’ve let someone else down, you’ll fall deeper down a hole of self-criticism. You’ll have to spend more time getting out of said hole, rather than getting back on track with your goal.

4. Know that you can always do something.
“There are times you feel you can do anything, and there are times you feel you can do nothing — most times you’re wrong,” Waddington says. Believe it or not, this is good news. At the start of the year, you might feel amped to change. Soon, though, you’ll probably hit a road bump and experience intense defeat. Retain Waddington’s dogma and you’ll be better equipped for resilience. On certain days, you might not be able to stop yourself from going through an entire pack of cigarettes, but if you can delay taking a drag — even for five seconds — you have done something differently. You have made a change.

5. Know your bias.
Or, rather, recognize your very human negativity bias. We are much more likely to remember negative events than positive ones, and this behavior tends to serve as an obstacle. Waddington says we “double count” the negative and “single count” the positive. This pattern grew out of evolutionary necessity: To err on the side of alarmism led our ancestors to run when they thought they’d heard a bear. But when it comes to achieving goals, we need to even out the score. Be mindful of this tendency, so when you screw up, you can recover quickly and keep up with your progress. It’s very human to curse the things you did wrong. Remember that, then recall one thing you did right.

6. Focus on your breath.
This’ll quiet the critical self-talk — another one of those demons engrained in our human nature. Waddington says often it’s what we tell ourselves that’s most crippling. We can easily fall into a paralyzing “I can’t” trap, but remember, you can always do something. “If you’re focusing on your breathing, you have less of a chance to criticize yourself in your head,” he says. Not only can this mindfulness exercise quiet those internal beasts, but it can also have positive physiological effects, like lowering your blood pressure.

7. Have skin in the game.
“You have to give a damn,” Waddington says. “If you’re going to have a goal — no matter how small — be invested in it.” This requires forming a battle plan: Draw out your tactics, collect your weapons and fight the hard fight. This practice is reminiscent of the saying, “Do it with passion or not at all.” Your mission shouldn’t be all-consuming; it needn’t take up every second of your day. But, you should make sure it’s something you care about, and that you’re seeking to accomplish it because it is of personal importance, and not for something or someone else.

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Go get ’em! 🙂
Coach Jentry

Gumsaba Outdoor Fitness Class schedule Thursday 1/8/15

5:30AM Sunrise Danville Womens only class – Coach Briana – Obstacle Course + Muscular Endurance

5:30AM Sunrise Danville Mens only class – Coach Joel – HIIT Metabolic!6AM Sunup Lafayette Co-Ed class – Coach Jentry –  Obstacle Course + Muscular Endurance

9AM Sunshine Walnut Creek Womens class – Coach Briana – Obstacle Course + Muscular Endurance
11:00AM Cytosport HIIT Training – Coach Briana (private class) 
12:00PM Cytosport Power Yoga – Coach Jentry (private class)