We all have goals, whether they are big or small, they are present. So how do you achieve your goals? Do you write them down; do you have a game plan? Do you run away from them?
There is an old brainteaser that Scientists have studied which asks, “How do you eat an elephant?” When most adults are asked to answer this question, they are stumped because they start to over complicate it and spend too much time focusing on the almost impossible end task; adults have a tendency to miss the simplicity behind the answer. When the same question is asked to children, they see the question in a much simpler way and most times can answer it correctly by saying “one bite at a time”.
The same applies to our goals in life – lets break them down instead of focusing on how daunting or impossible the final goal appears to be.
For me, one of my many crazy goals is to be able to do a headstand pushup – don’t ask me why - but it is. For me, the thought of being upside down (which might I add is a huge fear for me), supported by only my arms and being able to do a push up seems like next to impossible, but rather than give up, I made it one of my goals that I am working on this year.
The irony to my goal is that I have never – yes you read that correctly, never in my 36 years of life (nope not even as a child) have I ever done a headstand. I was that girl who got laughed at in gym class for not being able to do a cartwheel either. The thought of being upside down freaked me out as a kid, and freaks me out even more as an adult. Recently in one of my workouts at Crossfit, upside pushups was part of the WOD (workout of the day) – and similarly to when I was a kid, my hands were getting sweaty and I was feeling anxious about what was about to happen. When I admitted to my coach that I was a freak of nature, deprived child who had never done a headstand, he said so simply and cool as a cucumber – “that’s ok, we’ll break it down, lets start with getting you upside down”.
And so there you have it: bite one of my elephant – get comfortable being upside down. Everyday I am committing to getting into a headstand and increasing my stance by 1 sec… I want to get to the point that the fear is gone and I am beyond comfortable with the headstand. Bite two – that will be working on my shoulder strength to be able to dip upside down, (let me add in here, I am no where close in strength nor have any idea how I will build the strength to do this). Bite Three – the unthinkable, do a headstand pushup. Bite Four (eating my goal for breakfast) 5 consecutive upside pushups :)
So what are some of your goals? Are some of them as crazy and meaningless as this one is for me? Do you have some more serious ones? Whatever the goal is big or small, break it down! Don’t get fixated on how difficult the final outcome appears to be, take small bites and revel in the small successes knowing that the big one is just bites away.
A good friend once gave me some great advice, he told me to look at my goals as a mountain and when climbing that mountain to look back every now and then to remember how far I have climbed and not just focus on how much further I have to go.
So what do you say? Time for you to take your first step?