Regaining Control: How To Reach Your Goals

There’s been a lot of things going on recently in my life. From turning 21, to dealing with the last handful of university deadlines as well as the usual trying-to-keep-on-top-of-life stuff it’s safe to say that things have taken a toll a little bit.

Last week was a total write off. If you know me personally, you know this is something I say basically every week- but this time it was for real. I was poorly and generally lacked all motivation to get my shit together.

But over the past few days I’ve been reconsidering my goals and attempting to make new ones. I’m constantly working on transforming my mindset and becoming more positive, in order to be more productive. I am generally aiming to be a better and happier me.

So I thought I’d share some simple steps that I am taking to help you and I reach our goals and how to get back on track when things have slowed down:

  • Make your to-do list the night before

Literally write every single thing down that you need to get done, either for the next day or for the following week. I’m talking the obvious stuff, like assignments and work bits, but also things like chores, calling your parents, doing a face mask, making dinner and so on. Although the list may look a little intimidating at first, once you start doing the basic stuff and ticking off your progress you’re going to feel more motivated to tackle the bigger things.

Plus, by writing things down and getting them out of your head means you’re going to have more room in there, which will come in handy when dealing with said tasks!

  • Figure out why 

Why is it you want to do all of these things? Why do you feel like you’ve lost control? Take some time to either write it down or talk about the reasons why you suddenly want to change your routine, work harder, exercise or whatever it is your planning on doing.

By figuring out the ultimate motive behind your work (to feel accomplished, to feel better) you’re going to find it easier to actually do the thing. Working out what you want and more specifically why you want it, gives you something to turn to when you’re needing inspiration or motivation. It should get your excited about your progress and make you feel like you’re doing the right thing. If it doesn’t, then maybe you should reconsider your goals.

  • Start early

It’s a new week, which means a new start. So why don’t you start now? But don’t use the fact you’ve missed the beginning of the week to let the rest go to waste. You can literally make changes whenever you want, but I’d suggest starting early to give yourself a head-start.

I know that not everyone is a morning person, and that’s totally cool (you do you) so you don’t have to take this literally. Early here doesn’t have to mean early in the morning, but rather as early as possible in your own routine. Instead of wasting time procrastinating or thinking about all of the things you need to do, just force yourself to get on with it as soon as possible. It’ll make the world of difference and once you’ve started you’ll realise it’s easier to just keep going!

  • Get inspired

Without comparing yourself, look to other people to see how they’re getting on and use it to fuel your own work. I have some links in the end of this post that have helped me but try to use other people’s advice, stories and experiences to push you to make the most of yours. Look for inspirational quotes, YouTube videos on how-to or even look to your friends and see how they do it.

You’ll notice everyone has their own struggles and everyone is just trying to get on with things the best they can.

  • Break it up

Like I mentioned previously, it’s easy to get overwhelmed when you have a huge list of things to do. If you break everything up into manageable chunks, it’ll not only make the task easier to start but also easier to finish as  your progress will be clearer to see this way.

For example, if you have an essay to write instead of just writing down ‘do essay’ break it up into separate tasks. So that could be ‘get books from library’, ‘research this area on the internet’, ‘write introduction’ and so on. Once you start ticking off tasks and getting somewhere with your goal, you’re more likely to feel motivated to get it done. Or you’ll at least feel pleased with your progress which will encourage you with other tasks.

  • Do it your own way

It’s all well and good me offering you advice on how to reach your goals and complete that to-do list, but I know that what works for me mightn’t work for you. We’re all different and we all have our own way of doing things. And while I do think the advice in this post may help (or at least encourage you), you may need to tailor things to suit your circumstances.

A simple example of this is to-do lists. I have to admit, I am someone that can appreciate a to do list. But I prefer to keep my simple, handwritten and often on a post-it that can be thrown away when everything is done. Some people like to make theirs online, in bullet journals, on their phone or some people don’t like to make them at all and can keep track of everything in their head (if this is you, I totally salute you!).

What I’m trying to say is you know yourself best, and although it can sometimes feel like you’re not doing things right because your progress doesn’t look like anyone else’s, you should make something that works for you. Don’t compare yourself with anyone else and make sure you’re doing the best for you to reach your goals.


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If you have something to say to can tweet me, comment below or contact me.

You can follow me on bloglovin’ or Instagram if you fancy.

Speak soon,

Rachael.

 

 

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Staying Motivated This Festive Season: A Pep Talk

Are you guys looking forward to Christmas? It feels like everyone is getting more and more festive every day, yet I’m still struggling to accept that it’s December already! Already I think it’s lovely that people are getting all excited about Christmas and all that jazz, I am more than aware that not everyone can relate.

I’m currently posting lots about this on here so stay tuned for more advicey things coming (and see my previous post here) but today I wanted to give us all a little pep talk. With two weeks to the day ’til Christmas I know a lot of people are struggling and stressing right now. Life doesn’t suddenly stop because it’s Christmas. Most of us still have deadlines, work and other commitments that we need to spend our time on before we can even think about what’s coming at the end of the month.

It can be really hard to keep focused though, when there’s so much excitement going on around you. I’m guessing my fellow students can’t wait until the end of the semester when they can return home and get some well deserved TLC. But right now are surrounded by deadlines and revision that just won’t budge.

You’ve got this. No matter who you are, or what you’re working on right now, you’ve got this. Let’s use the fact that this month is a bit mental and soon we’ll be surrounded by love ones and eating all the chocolate to push ourselves through this waiting period. As I said, life doesn’t take a break when Christmas arrives. But if we work hard now and push, push, push we can spend the rest of this festive season relaxing.

The new year is a fresh start and wouldn’t it be amazing if we could go into it stress-free? No outstanding deadlines, no work piled up. We could go into 2017 positive, well-rested and just generally hopeful. Because, God knows we need it after the year we’ve had!

This is probably a silly, cheesy post that won’t help anyone but I know that it’s nice to hear things like this every now and again. You’re not the only one and if we all do it together, it’ll be easier. Let’s try not to get too overwhelmed with the festivities and instead use them to push us forwards.

Stick on that Christmas playlist, arm yourself with Quality Streets and get that shit done.

Speak soon,

Rachael.

Falling at the Second Hurdle: Motivation Tips From A Fellow Failure

As I said in my first, and currently my only other, post to this blog I have so many plans for what I want to do with this platform. But what I didn’t say was that I’m incredibly lazy and can so easily get stuck in a rut meaning that these plans would probably go to waste within five minutes. And they almost did. But finally, finally, I’m here today to say I’m on it again. I may have tripped over the second, very high and difficult, hurdle but I’m back up now and trying to get back on track (see what I did there?).

I know I’m not the only one who struggles with this, “this” being maintaining motivation whether that be in your hobby, work or just general life, so I’ve took my struggles and tried to create something that can be helpful and overall just better than falling and feeling sorry for yourself.

So here are five little tips that I’ve found have helped me to keep going and what I use when I need motivation, just for you:

1. Music

Music is something that helps enhance any emotion you could possibly be feeling. Whenever I want to feel good, say if I’m getting ready for a night out, I turn to a cheesy, upbeat pop playlist. Likewise, if I feel like a good cry after a long day but it just won’t happen, I turn to the selection of songs that just hit me every time and afterwards I feel much clearer and calmer. So naturally, when I need a little motivational boost the easiest and simplest thing for me to do is turn to music. Anything upbeat, catchy with lyrics that I know and love can lift my spirits, making everything seem easier and helping me to push on through any block I have.

2. Other People

Whether it be an Instagram post of someone’s “busy morning”, success stories in a magazine or just listening to the people around me I’ve found that seeing other people being productive and simply just doing stuff, I feel more inclined and more wanting to do the same. I hate that moment when I’ll be talking to a friend, relative or colleague and they ask “so, what have you been up to?” and the only answer I have is a shrug. “Nothing, really” I’ll say. Although it doesn’t matter what people think of you and you should be free to spend your time how you want, I can’t help but feel a little embarrassed for myself in this situation and I want to avoid that as often as I can!

3. The Past

Similarly, when I look back at how I’ve spent my time throughout my life I often get a little bit… disappointed with myself. I have wasted so much time over my nineteen years on this earth and that normally hits me all at once. Often as I’m trying to sleep (thanks, brain!). Hindsight helps you see so much and with me that’s often the time I wasted on Youtube or just sitting still when I could have been writing, reading, socialising, exercising, working, learning a new language, juggling… The list seems endless when you’re looking back, but in that moment it seems like doing nothing is the only option. And that is okay, once in a while. But looking back on my wasted time encourages me to try my hardest to make the most of the time I have now.

4. The Future

As well as looking back, I also like to think about what is ahead of me. Like everyone, I have so many plans about what I want in order to achieve the ‘dream life’ but none of them are easy to come by. That thought alone is normally something that can make me want to hide back under my duvet, return to the perpetually angry thirteen year-old I still am inside and whine “what’s the point?!” But it can also have the opposite effect, if I’m able to flip my mindset. I don’t have time to waste when I think about it. There’s so many things I could be doing and working on in order to get to where I want to be in my career and overall just well-being that I always have something I can do that is more productive than watching reruns of Come Dine With Me (which you should still do by the way. In no way am I saying you should not watch Come Dine With Me, because you should. Just in moderation).

The Future also helps motivate me because as I said previously, looking back on all my wasted time is such a downer and I want to prevent that as much as I can. So by working and being productive now, I save future me the hassle of looking back and being upset. You see? Timey-whimey stuff you can do at home!

5. Pictures

…Of anything. Quotes, sunny beaches, parties, my friends and family. I’m really interested in photography and am obsessed with taking pictures of anything I can and looking back on the pictures I’ve taken myself of my friends and family, the fun and good stuff we’ve been up to helps remind me that no matter what I think I do have people out there that care about me, or at least have done in the past, and although I have spent a lot of time sitting still I have done so much and made so many memories. My phone background, something I see on a daily basis, is currently a collage of pictures of me and my nearest and dearest. I know this sounds completely random, like “wow, cheers Rachael for this amazing piece of information” but hear me out. I see this on a daily basis. That means a daily, hourly and on occasionally sad days, minute-by-minute, reminders of how lucky I am, how happy I am and have been, the people around me and the things I’ve done. So when I am feeling low or not motivated in the slightest, I look at my phone or the various images around me and feel lighter and better about my situation.

So there you have it, that’s some little tips from me to you. I hope this helps you, I know these come in handy for me a lot.

Good luck with whatever you’re working on!

Speak soon,

Rachael