I am the kind of person that needs a goal and time pressure in order to get going. Without a goal I tend to procrastinate, which can result in a feeling of dissatisfaction at the end of the day, when I have not done as much as I wanted to do.
On October 25th I was one of the teachers at Yoga Magazine’s Yoga Festival in Amsterdam. I was asked to teach two workshops there: How to do Handstand and how to do Crowpose.
And this was highly motivating for me. You know why? I now had something to work for. Because teaching a certain pose requires (in my humble opinion) that you should master the pose, or at least know the ins and outs of the pose in order to help others mastering it.
I have been trying to master the handstand for quite some time, but I did not seem to progress much. Sometimes I could keep the pose for a short moment but it was never very long. Now, for this workshop I wanted to be able to hold my handstand for much longer. So I started working diligently every day. First studying the technique in detail, and next applying the technique, for the technique’s sake only. The good thing about that is that by focusing on the process, the final result will come.
So what’s the lesson here?
When we focus too much on the end result, we forget to look at the way to get there. And it’s all about those small steps, which eventually will help you reach that final result.
Goal setting is one of the elements of Mental Strength training, which is applied in successful sports (teams) all the time and which I teach in workshops too. And it works as follows:
1. Focus. Goals bring attention to what needs to be done and help you to come up with a strategy to reach them.
2. Motivation. Goals help you to move an to get started. If you don’t know what you are doing it for, why starting in the first place?
3. Persistance. Goals help you persist because there is a reward waiting for you at the finish line. What the reward is, can be different per person. When you have smaller sub-goals to work on, you can stick to your goals much easier, because every small succes brings you closer to your desired larger end goals.
4. Control & Confidence. Reaching goals gives a boost to your self confidence and your sense of self control. Of course you learn something every day by just living your life. But when setting goals, you become the master of your own development. And that feels good 🙂