Goals that stick, instead of crumble: A Step-by-Step Tutorial

By December 5, 2019 No Comments

Hay Girl,

With a New Decade almost upon us, I want to empower you to start keeping the goals you set for yourself.

I can’t tell how many times I’ve set unrealistic expectations for myself. I still do, especially around my time management. I struggle with realistic expectations because I want to do all the things, and committing to only 1 or 2 manageable goals for the day feels “too small.”

Well, I have news for myself (and you) … it’s those “too small” goals, repeatedly accomplished, that add up to big change.

I can’t say the same for overloading myself with too many expectations, that simply end in disappointment and low-key shame when I inevitably can’t hit all of them by day’s end.

Switching gears into physique transformation: if you – or anyone you love – has ever struggled with goal execution, this is for you (or them)!

The below goal-accomplishing guide distinguishes between aesthetic goals, and the process-oriented lifestyle modifications that we must make to achieve those goals.

I first learned this process about five years ago. It’s greatly changed my own life, and how successful I am with my clients.

  1. Write down an aesthetic goal that you would like to reach, one year from today.
  2. Write down what it is currently costing you to *not* already be at this goal.
  3. Write down how it will feel once you *do* reach this goal. (Steps 2 and 3 will provide valuable motivation for the moments when you doubt yourself in this process.)
  4. Write down 3-5 lifestyle modifications that could help you reach this aesthetic goal.
  5. Evaluate each lifestyle modification on how realistic it is for you to implement, right now.

Use a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being “exceptionally realistic.”

Write down the number next to each modification you listed.

  1. Go back and circle all modifications to which you assigned either a 9 or 10.

(If all of them were below a 9, you’ll want to take the modification that has the highest score, and below it, write down smaller, easier versions of that same modification. Think of breaking the assignment down into bite-size pieces. Keep ranking each smaller modification, until you have at least one modification that you can assign a 9 or 10 to. Proceed.)

  1. Assign yourself just one modification, and get to work implementing it. You need to stick to the goal for a minimum of two weeks, assuming it is a daily habit you’re working on. If it’s a habit that repeats less frequently than daily, you’ll want to expand your timeline accordingly.

(If you have difficulty sticking with the modification, be patient and realistic and loving with yourself. These things take time. If you feel, after an initial rocky start, that you can make it work with more practice, go for it. If, after trying the modification for a while, you feel it is no longer realistic, you may put it on the shelf and return to your list. Identify a more attainable modification.)

Once you’ve comfortably maintained your first habit for two consecutive weeks (or longer, if appropriate), you may consider it adopted as a new baseline.

  1. Return to your initial list of modifications, and repeat steps 5 through 7. As you repeat this process for each successfully completed modification, your self accountability will improve, along with the way you physically look and/or feel. This should cause the modifications that were once lower than a 9, to begin to earn higher ratings and become more realistic. You can adjust the number you assign to each modification, accordingly, as time goes on.


Case Study. 

  1. My 1 year goal: Broaden my shoulders by 1”, to reach 52”. But, I don’t want my waist to be any bigger than it is right now – 33”.


  1. What it’s costing me to not already be there: I wonder if I look foolish posting near-naked flexing photos.  I’m trying to compete with world-class bodies, like the hottest pornstars and Instagram models.  I know I can be more competitive with them than I currently am. So, it’s costing me pride to not be in that category already.


  1. How it will feel when I do reach this goal: It will feel like I have nothing left to prove, to myself or anyone else. I will feel hotter, prouder, more joyful, and more powerful than I do now, or ever have in the past.


  1. 3-5 lifestyle modifications I will need to make to reach this goal:


  • Consistently eat three square meals a day, instead of 1-2.
  • Begin taking the supplements on a daily basis that my coach recommended.
  • Get bi-weekly massages.


  1. How realistic are each of the modifications I just listed?


5/10         Consistently eat three square meals a day, instead of 1-2.

6/10        Begin taking the supplements on a daily basis that my coach recommended.

7/10        Get bi-weekly massages.


  1. I notice that none of my modifications reached a 9 out of 10 realistic. So, I will break down the modification that received the highest score – bi-weekly massages, at 7/10 –  into smaller pieces:


8/10      Get a monthly massage.

10/10    Get a massage at least once every 2 months.


  1. I see that I rate it as 100% realistic that I can get a massage at least once every 2 months. So, that’s the modification I select to work on. I put a reminder in my calendar for the first week of every month over the next year to get a massage. This way, even if I only have a 50% compliance, I will still hit my goal.
  2. After four months of successfully getting a massage about every five weeks, I go back to step 5 – my list above. I am now more motivated to take on my goal of consuming regular supplements. I’m now at an 8 out of 10 with that modification. Breaking that modification down into smaller bites, I can honestly say it’s a 10 out of 10 realistic that I’ll take supplements at least 3 times per week. So, I get to work on that.

With love, and self-love, 


Special Bonus:
Here are the links to two extra articles you or someone you love, might love.

Get an imPECcable chest workout – no gym required

Sleigh your Holiday nutrition – while having fun


Author brandenhayward

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