In the prior article series, we looked at the 5 secrets of change. (If you missed any of the 5 secrets, you can read them here). These five elements need to be in place no matter what program, product, plan, or diet you follow in order to make lasting change. In my course, Finally Make It Happen, I’ve developed a simple process that incorporates all 5 of the secrets so that you don’t even need to think about it.
You don’t have to take my course to get the benefits though. You can apply those secrets to any program, process or diet plan you decide to pursue. If you apply all 5 elements to your plan, then you can increase your chances of success exponentially. But the reality is, while the five secrets will get you far, they are not enough to ensure you succeed. To reach your goals, fulfill your dreams, and get your to do list done, you need to be able to overcome the five reasons most people fail t get what they want.
The first reason people fail is a lack of clarity: they aren’t clear on what they truly want and they don’t have a clear plan that will work for them to get it. Having a plan that works, that includes all five secrets, will help you avoid failure, because the #1 reason people fail is because they don’t have a plan, or the right kind of a plan, for making change.
It may seem obvious, but it still catches people off guard so many times: knowing what you really want is critical to getting it. If you think you want to lose weight but you don’t realize that you are overeating because you are miserable in your relationship, for example, then a weight loss goal is not going to get you where you want to go.
Then creating the right plan for you that incorporates the five secrets of change: small, effortless, empowered, progressive, and supportive. Most people either fail to plan, which as they say is a plan to fail, or they choose a plan that is way too restrictive to make lasting change. In my audio course, we make a simple easy, customizable step-by-step plan to get you where you want to go and we make sure you are crystal clear on what your REALLY want.
Once you have clarity, we turn to the second reason that most people fail to get what they want: they have what scientists call a belief gap between what they think is possible and what actually is possible. Let’s face it, we have all tried to do something and failed before. Many of us have tried to make lasting change and have not been able to do so. So we have a belief that we can’t do it. This belief may be obvious to you and you may be fully aware of it because you tried and failed so many times before. Often, however, it is subconscious and we don’t even know it exists.
Many of us have what are known as limiting beliefs, or beliefs that we can’t do or have something. These ideas that it’s hopeless, we’re helpless, it’s useless, we’re worthless or blameless (because we choose to make excuses and blame everyone else) are embedded within our subconscious and can sabotage us and set us up for failure. We may not even know that they are there. So how do they get there?
Scientists know that there are actually 5 different brain waves, alpha, delta, beta, gamma, and theta. Up to age 6, our brains are in the theta stage. We are awake, aware and absorbing all. It’s the same stage we go into under hypnosis. But this brain wave, while awake and aware, does not have a filter. So we take in everything and it leaves an indelible impression, yet we don’t question it or assess it in any way. After age 6, we start to question and filter information but prior to that, we just drink it all in.
So if your parents said money is the root of all evil, or change is hard, you will subconsciously believe that. If someone told you that you were not good at something, or you heard something on TV or maybe you overheard people talking about how “that’s” not for them, no matter what “that” might be, all that information was imprinted on your mind and you may not even know that it’s still there. In my course, Finally Make It Happen, we look at conscious beliefs as well as subconscious beliefs and learn how to bust the beliefs that don’t serve us and build new beliefs that do, using the latest cutting edge mind/body techniques.
But there is something you can do right now to start new belief building. Take out a piece of paper and write down all the reason why you CAN do or have something. I am skinny, wealthy, done with my book because… until you have a nice long list! This process creates a turn around in your brain from a negative belief to a positive one and it builds confidence and self-esteem toward reaching your goal. It may seem silly or simple, but this simple shift really refocuses your brain on re-framing “I can’ts” into “I cans” so you can Finally Make It Happen. Science shows that re-framing in this positive way can shift your beliefs and open up more possibility, confidence and success in your life.
The next major reason people fail also has to do with mindset and it is all about motivation mastery. We all have motivations for pursuing our dreams and reaching our goals, but we also know that motivation can fade over time. In my course, Finally Make It Happen, we look at positive and negative motivation and see why both are important. We learn how to harness and master motivation over time. We also look at why science shows that to succeed, you need to unite your left (logical goal-setting) side and your right (emotional, visual, freedom-loving) side of the brain together in the fight to make it happen.
We often focus on the left logical brain and make goals and lists which are effective tools for making progress, but without uniting the right brain along with the left, it’s like trying to run on one leg: you can move forward, but not very quickly and you will get very tired over time. It can be hard to stick with a goal over time, especially if the right “emotional” more immediate gratification side of the brain wants something else in that moment.
That’s when all of a sudden the ice cream is much more important than fitting in your skinny jeans. This is normal and we know this: it happens to everyone. But there are ways to unite the left and right brain to master motivation and make sure these moments are few and far between. We go through a number of techniques in my course, but I can give you one right now that you can use today to help maintain motivation.
When you think about your goal or objective and you focus in on your motivation, try to bring in your right brain by seeing as well as thinking. The brain actually converts words into visual images. When you say the word tree, your mind sees a tree, not the letters. So when you set that goal to lose 10 pounds, see yourself as you will be when you reach that goal. Create pictures in your mind around the end result. See the office you’ll get with your new promotion or the new car you want and picture yourself having it/being it/doing it. It’s important not just to focus on the end result, but also to focus on yourself getting there: see yourself working toward your goal and then reaching it.
Then to ramp it up even more, bring in another right brain element, feeling. Feel what it will feel like to reach that goal and any time you waiver or the ice cream tempts you, see and feel yourself reaching the goal and the temptation will lessen. It’s been proven that when you connect visuals and feelings with your goals, they become much stronger and you can reconnect to your motivation with images and feelings any time you are distracted or tempted or even procrastinating. Take a deep breath and refocus on the images and the feelings; this simple technique will start your motivation mastery and you can build on it from there.
The fourth reason people fail is because they don’t know how to make — or break — habits. There is still a myth out there that new habits take 21 days to form, and that is simply not true. Some habits can be made, or broken, very quickly while others can take months or years to become ingrained. It has a lot to do with again uniting our left and right brains together in the fight so that emotion and logic are partnering to get the job done. You need to know the secrets to making new habits more easily. In my course, Finally Make It Happen, we delve into the 7 most effective habit helpers you can use to make a new healthy habit.
Here’s one habit helper that you can use right now: tie a new behavior to an already established habit. Scientists call it anchoring and it works because this new behavior piggybacks off something that you are already doing without thinking about it. So for example, if you are trying to remember to take your vitamins at night before you sleep, you might put the bottle next to your toothbrush. Since brushing before bed is already automatic, everything you pick up your brush, you’ll see the vitamins and remember to take them.
Now that’s a very simple example and it may be every time you open the refrigerator or turn on the TV, or it may be that you really need to get creative like I did with one of my clients. He really wanted to meditate but he was a busy executive with a large family and could never seem to find time to do it without being interrupted. He’d go in the bedroom to lie down or close his door at work and there would be an emergency or a crisis or a call.
So I looked at other activities in his day, where he is alone and how we could tie meditation in. In the end, I got really creative and decided that every time he got in the car, which was typically to go to work and to come home from work, he took a minute to close his eyes and be quiet. We started small, with one minute and gradually over time it grew to be longer. No one bothered him and he learned that even if he was running late, by still taking that minute or two, he was calmer, clearer and more effective.
He ended up turning off his phone and driving to and from work after his meditation in quiet and stillness and it became his favorite time of day. So whether it’s simple or you have to get really creative, tie your action to something you already do and it will make it easier to create a new habit.
The last reason people fail to reach their goal, achieve their dream or get it done, is that they lack willpower to resist in the moment. Many of us have come to believe we don’t have enough willpower or that we are weak, but that’s simply not true. The truth is that willpower is like a muscle. If you don’t have it, it simply means you haven’t exercised it and if you start to exercise it, it will strengthen and develop over time.
In my course, Finally Make It Happen, we go through 10 exercises to strengthen your willpower and arm you with willpower weapons. I want to leave you with one willpower weapon that you can use today to help banish temptation and stay on track. One of my favorite willpower weapons is what I like to call If/then. And it simply means that if you feel tempted, you will have a plan already in place for what you will do then.
For example, if I am tempted to eat the ice cream, I will close the fridge door and count to ten and see myself in my skinny jeans. If I am tempted to buy yet another pair of brown boots because they are on sale, I will take a walk and remember the beach vacation I am saving for.
Or my personal favorite if then because it relates back to the 5th secret of change, support, if I am tempted then I will call my best buddy who knows how badly I want to reach my goal and she will call me out and question whether I really want to make that choice. It’s a simple technique, but by planning in advance for temptation or possible failure, you can put a plan in place so you know exactly what to do and you’ll be much more likely to overcome the temptation and stick to your goal.
Armed with tools to overcome the 5 reasons most people fail to get what they want, you can get started, keep going, and get it done. No matter what your “it” may be.
Here’s to your success so you can Finally Make It Happen. You can learn more about the Finally Make It Happen course at www.ingerpols.com/courses
To your wellness and health: your true wealth!
Author: Inger Pols is the Editor of the New England Health Advisory and Author/Creator, Finally Make It Happen, the proven process to get what you want. Get a free special report on The Truth About Sugar: It’s Not All Equal. Learn more about Inger and receive her free bestselling ebook What Your Doctor Isn’t Telling You at www.ingerpols.com/freegifts.
Article Photo: courtesy of renjith krishnan | FreeDigitalPhotos.net