How many personal resolutions have you achieved in life? It’s one thing to decide to lose weight, or get fit, or learn a new skill, or get a degree, but a whole other thing to stick with it and finish. The difficulty with achieving these types of goals is that it takes more than one decision on one day to get there. It takes consistent, focused effort – in other words, continually deciding that the long-term goal is more important than the whims of any given moment. There are many temptations and excuses that derail us along the way:
I want to get fit, but I’m tired so I will take a break just for tonight.
I want to get that degree, but I would have to miss my favorite TV series tonight.
I wish I could be strong like her, but it’s too much work.
I wish I could get a better job, but I don’t have the skills to get hired.
So how does one get from committing to a goal to achieving it? The first step is setting a good goal. “I want to get fit” is not well-thought out as a goal. Master Jo works with students to select SMART goals. These are focused goals that force thought and planning before starting on a difficult path. Read more about SMART goals and how to set them here.
The next step — and the more difficult one — is discipline. This means staying focused on the goal despite distractions. It means making the hard choice no matter if you are tired, or upset, or tempted. It is a skill that can be honed, like any other, but it takes work and practice. The good news is, developing stronger discipline in one area of life will improve your discipline in all areas. Every time you stick it out and reach a goal, it builds a stronger reserve of discipline for the next time you are faced with a tough choice. No one can build that strength of will for you, but surrounding yourself (or your kids) with positive role models and a good support system is a great way to get started.
Martial Arts are an excellent way to build discipline, and it is a part of training at Elite TOMA. Be SMART and start on the path to an achievable goal today!