You Want What You Want, But Why? How to Keep Your Promises and Reach Your Goals in 2014

Happy New YearHappy New Year!
It seems like only yesterday, corks were popping as we welcomed in the New Year and while 2014 is indeed quite young, many of the millions of resolutions made with vigorous conviction are already fading to the back of our minds. There they will remain, inactive, or so you think. The truth is our abandoned resolutions and the broken promises we make to ourselves, still have the power to drain our energy like a parasite that only looks harmless until you take it under the loop for examination.
It is when we take a closer look at the nature of broken resolutions and neglected goals that we realize that the promises that we repeatedly make and break to ourselves are harmful and left to nest at the back of our minds, they grow roots of self-defeat that can suck the life out of our hopes, dreams and visions.
Am I being too melodramatic? You tell me. What I know for sure is that the more often we break promises to ourselves, the easier it gets to break them. Think of that fitness club membership that you never use. And the more often we break our promises to ourselves, the less likely we are to achieve our goals and live our dreams. It doesn’t have to be this way.

So what can you do to make promises to yourself that you will keep? At the risk of sounding like your mother, the key to succeeding here is knowledge- and action. Knowing WHAT you want to achieve is important and knowing WHY is even more important and knowing HOW the why connects to your core values is absolutely essential. When you are fully aware of the responses to these three questioning words, the action part becomes so much easier.
Let’s look at THE New Year’s resolution classics of how this works. Imagine your big 2014 goal is to lose 15 pounds. That is your what. Now, why do you want to lose 15 pounds? If your response is something like, “so, I can look better,” I challenge you to connect “So I can look better” to one of your innermost values what you and your life are about. If you have difficulty doing this, your resolution is already well down the path of defeat. Why? Because although there is a certain high that comes with rocking that pencil skirt or flexing the pecs under that rugged Henley shirt, at the most basic level, we desire more. We are wired for a purpose-driven life; we want things to matter to us and make a difference in our lives and the world around us.
Do you feel an argument, welling up inside you? Perhaps you are thinking, “Hey lady, I really do want to lose 15 pounds and look HOT, darn it!” O.k. Then get to the bottom of “why”. Let’s go back to the goal and try to find out where “looking better” fits into what is at the core of who you are and what you value.
What would “looking better” really mean to you? Imagine you have lost the weight. Go through the whole scenario in your mind as if you are living one day in your new body. How do look now? How does that make you feel? What is now different about your day or even about your life?
Let’s say you now imagine yourself wearing a fabulous outfit as you join a group of friends or colleagues for cocktails at a really “in” place, that you didn’t feel comfortable going to before (nor did you get invited.) Perhaps, the core value that is crying out for attention is “a sense of belonging” or “the need to feel accepted”. How much more powerful is that connection than simply “looking better”? Understanding what is driving you to make resolutions and other promises to yourself and the world, will help you to address the real issues and exponentially increase your chances of reaching any goal you choose.
So here’s another challenge from me to you: drag out all those resolutions nesting at the back of your mind – I know it may be a bit scary, but you can do it! Look at the what, examine the why and connect it to a core value. If you can’t connect the why to one of your core values, you may be trying to live up to something you think you “should” be doing simply because the world says so and not because you truly want to achieve this. If you are able to connect the why to a core value, make sure that it is a positive value, anything else is just your inner critic trying to convince you that you are less than worthy and less than absolutely fabulous. (This is something else that I know for sure: You and I were made to shine and radiate the magnificent light of our creator.)
So clear out the parasites at the back of your mind, so you can put all your energy into making your dreams come true and living up to who you are meant to be.

And I have said it before and I’ll say it again – while you may want to do so for your health, you don’t need to lose 15 or even 5 pounds to be accepted and appreciated, although you may need to drop some dead weight like negative thinking and superficial “friends”…
TAKE ACTION. MAKE IT HAPPEN! You don’t have to do it alone. Send me a message or give me a ring so we can get started on making this year, your year. A twenty minute consultation will only cost you twenty minutes of your time. That is a real deal!

Make It Happen!

Make It Happen!

About Denise Banks-Grasedyck, Coach. Consultant. Speaker.

I'm an entrepreneur, a wife and a mother. I'm a Freedom Fighter for the overcommitted professional and a designer of Ideal-Life and Business blueprints. Discovering and developing simple solutions to complex challenges is one of my super powers. I write about life and business and everything that intersects them.
This entry was posted in Authenticity, Success Tips, Take Charge of Your Life, Work, Life and Balance and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to You Want What You Want, But Why? How to Keep Your Promises and Reach Your Goals in 2014

  1. Hmmm. This year’s resolution is to nurture my children’s spirits — in nature. And after reading your blog, I think my motives — which sound self-evident in the resolution — are big! I want them to respect and care for the planet, yes. I want them to have a spirituality and a sense of something bigger than they are. I want them to be resilient …. and make my job as a parent easier! Ha ha, yes, that’s what it comes to! AND it’s the same resolution I made last year, and forgot about. So my broken promises are to them, which pulls me up short, right? And it makes your point about the festering broken promise all the clearer. Thank you, Denise, for this chance to reflect on the strength or weakness of my word. xx Angela

    • Angela, the moment of awareness is exactly the moment of redemption. One way to reframe “coming up short” is “still on the way” and that is what we all are, because our development, our evolution, our lives are journeys until they end. I have a sense that your children are being nurtured in many ways as they watch you navigating your way. Thank you for taking the time to share with me.
      Wishing you grace for today!

  2. Pamela Wills says:

    Denise it is so true that repeatedly breaking promises we make to our Selves ~ whether those promises are goals we set or habits we intend to break ~ leads to the erosion of trust in our Selves as well as confidence. Being specific about what we want to achieve, accepting who we are right now, taking tiny baby steps every day towards our goals and following through until we reach them all help us to trust that we will keep our promises. Keeping promises to others helps, too! Thanks for this great reminder! Happy 2014!

    • Thanks for taking the time to make such an insightful comment, Pamela. I found that most people actually tend to be better at keeping promises to others than to themselves. There may be a connection to the cyclic self-disappointment connected to the situation you describe. And sometimes we need to give ourselves the same respect and kindness we extend to others. Wishing you and amazing 2014 and grace for today!

  3. Patrice says:

    Great insight into the root of resolving to take resolutions/change to the next level. There is a Why in all that motivates us 🙂

  4. Jill Place says:

    Thanks for spurring me on. My resolution is to take my business to the next level. I have to define that. And drop some dead weight wherever I can find it.

    • Jill, you have got what it takes to rock your weight management business and not only get rid of the dead weight in your own life, but help all those folks who are still trying to get rid of those extra pounds and some of those unhealthy conditions they have been struggling with for years! Wishing you lots of success in whatever terms you define it!

  5. Denise, this is so spot on! You’re right, it’s much easier to keep the promises we’ve made to others than the ones we’ve made to ourselves. I love your suggestions for getting to the deeper Why. I also think that some resolutions fall by the wayside simply because we don’t really know the How involved with making them a reality and get overwhelmed. Taking those baby-steps everyday and seeking out the people who can help us figure out the How to achieve our goals is so important. For me, having an accountability buddy is also vital! 🙂

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