Reaching your goals is like taking a road trip. Say for example you were starting in California and you wanted to go to New York. The process of planning, packing, and driving offer a good analogy for your process of setting goals, getting ready, and taking action.
The first step is just deciding where you want to go, your goal. This seems obvious, but often when people set goals they forget this important step. Setting a vague goal is like telling the taxi driver to take you to "somewhere better." Which is often the vague health goal. "I'm sorry," says the driver, "I don't know how to get there."
It's the same with goals. First we need to know where we're going. Let's stick with New York for this example. You've decided on your destination, so now you need to pick a vehicle. You could fly, drive, take the bus or train, or even walk if you're up for it. The point is that all of these vehicles can get you to New York, but they will get you there at different rates, and you're going to have a very different experience depending on what you choose.
Let's just say that you decide to drive 3,000 miles to New York. You would begin with at least a general idea of what roads you're going to take. You probably have no idea what those roads look like, or what the speed limit is, but that doesn't matter. You understand that there are a lot of things that you'll just have to wait to experience, but that's not going to stop you from beginning your trip.
What if, after a few days of driving, you found yourself in Miami? You don't want to berate yourself about getting to Florida. Instead the more productive alternative is just to turn north and keep driving. Maybe you want to figure out where you went wrong so that it doesn't happen again. You're going to make wrong turns in your quest for your goals. Just change directions and keep going.
You may have to stop and ask for directions. You may run out of gas. Your car might die and force you to hitchhike. But if you are determined, eventually you will reach New York.
So remember the map metaphor when you feel like you've lost your way. Remember that driving on a trip is a goal, and you know how to do that. Achieving your health goal is no different.
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