OK, so it didn’t work out as you’d planned.
Maybe it wasn’t the PB you where expecting.
You may not have reached the weight target you’d set for yourself.
Possibly injury took away your ability to show how well your training programme had been going.
We may feel we’ve failed in the moment. But we can sit, reflect and with time, the opportunity arises to start over again.
This time it’ll be different we tell ourselves, we’ve learned from the mistakes we’ve made. Yet we know deep down isn’t the first time we’ve told ourselves this.
But why can’t we get over the line with our goal?
Sometimes we all feel the outcome is outside of our control. It’s too big a step to take, or something always seem to get in the way.
Adverse weather can cancel an event we’re signed up for. An illness can disrupt you along the way. A global lockdown can closes gyms for months on end. Uncontrollables do exist, that can’t be denied.
When we sit down and begin to map out how we will reach a goal, we can make contingencies for the Uncontrollables to some extent, but we know deep down that we can only ever be passive to these factors. We observe and monitor the likelihood, but ultimately we’ve got little direct input.
We can’t change the weather, when we get sick or the severity of the illness, and we can’t directly influence the likelihood of future lockdowns on the health and fitness industry.
However, there are far more factors within our sphere of influence that we do have control over, than those outside.
This is where our time and effort needs to be spent. Where we need to apply focus. Where we need to strategise what needs to take place and execute the actions that result from our planning.
In our previous insight (here) we talked about removing ourselves as a barrier to our own success. How our own limiting beliefs, unwillingness to implement change, capacity to move outside of our own comfort zone, ability to overcome procrastination and success in moving beyond a fear of failure, represent barriers that we have to all overcome.
These are all factors within our control.
They may not be something we can change overnight. They may require help from others; family members, friends, coaches, support groups, others who have been through the process. But they are all within our control.
When we decide upon a goal, we must first understand how much control do we have over the outcome. This way, we can prevent mental or physical energy being expended on those things we have no control over.
Take a sheet of paper, write your goal at the top in as much detail as you currently can provide.
Draw a line through the middle of the page.
Title on one side Controllable the other side Uncontrollable. Now let’s start to write.
- What steps need to be taken, within your control, that you can start with now?
- Where may you need help in the future? (eg. a coach)
- Are there gaps in your current knowledge that you may need to fill? (eg. I want to learn an instrument but can’t read music)
- What behaviours are currently stopping you from getting started? (eg. only getting 4-5hrs of sleep a night)
List them as either inside or outside of your control.
Think deeply, many things we believe are outside of our control are simply failures to recognise the self-imposed barriers we’ve placed on ourselves.
Take your Controllable list and number each point based on urgency.
- What requires your immediate effort and attention?
- What factors may not be important now, but will be further along the journey?
- Where are the easy wins, the lowest hanging fruit, things that can be ticked off now?