I was talking with a client this week about goal-hopping and “shiny object syndrome.” This is the tendency to get really excited about a new goal (hello, New Year’s Resolutions!), dive in full force, and lose steam after a few weeks.
Then, a flashy new goal catches your eye and draws your attention and energy away from the initial goal, which you totally abandon before you even get to see any of your efforts pay off!
The cycle continues, and you end up starting a lot of things and giving up on them before you’ve had a chance to see them through. You’re working hard, consistently, but with little to show for it.
Does this goal-hopping sound familiar? If so, today’s post is for you!
WHY GOAL HOPPING TEMPORARILY FEELS GOOD
When you’ve selected a new goal and have made strides toward it, yet still feel far away from accomplishing it, it’s easy for your mind to tailspin.
When that happens, it’s normal to start feeling antsy and impatient, compare yourself to others or where you thought you’d be by now, and wonder whether or not your goal is even possible. This is what I call the "in-between stage".
The in-between stage is a necessary part of the process, but it can be a very vulnerable and uncomfortable one.
During this time, it’s tempting to distract yourself with a new goal and escape any of the self-doubt, fears, or boredom that have surfaced. Except this only lasts so long, and before you know it, you’re right back where you started.
Avoiding your feelings in this way is like putting a bandaid on the situation.
In order to turn things around for good, you have to change the way you think about the in-between stage.
ENJOYING THE PROCESS
Relaxing into the in-between stage can feel like a total overhaul of how you’ve always operated…and, in many ways, it will be. But there is a system upgrade available to you, and embracing it will allow you to enjoy so much more of your life!
I mean, think about it: Most of your life will be spent in between setting your sights on something and then working towards it. The actual achieving of any goal is fleeting.
Ironically, enjoying the process also tends to get you to the end goal faster. But even if it doesn’t, it doesn’t matter! Because you’re enjoying yourself along the way. That’s really what it’s all about!
A QUICK EXERCISE TO GET STARTED
An easy way to start is by imagining your future self five years from now.
Think back to this month and this year.
When you reflect on your goal and the process of achieving it from this perspective:
What stands out to you about this time in your life?
What do you remember and feel nostalgic about?
What was hard but ultimately SO worth it?
What are some of the good times or memories that working towards this goal brought you?
Who did you meet along the way?
What are some of the challenging times or mistakes that you now laugh about or feel grateful for?
Any and all of those things can be appreciated (and enjoyed) right now. You have that option, and I highly encourage you to take it.
Feel the nostalgia ahead of time, and lean into appreciation of what you have right now as it relates to your current goal.
Doing so will help you stick with it long enough to see it through to completion!
Let me know in the comments if you try this out, or have questions! I’m here for ya :)
To loving the process,