Momentum

How To Build Momentum to Reach Your Goals

Momentum (n.) –  strength or force gained by motion or by a series of events

When referring to a person or a group, momentum is often thought to be achieved through a repetitive series of achievements, successes, or wins. For example, on a sports team, one great play leads to another, and another, until a score. One score leads to another, then to a WIN. One win leads to another, and another, to a championship.

OK, we get the sports team analogy. However, in our day-to-day lives, as we strive for success or momentum towards a goal – the ultimate person holding us accountable is typically ourselves, alone.

Famous comedian and entrepreneur, Jerry Seinfeld gains momentum through a series of events he calls, “Don’t Break the Chain” . Every day that you complete a task towards a goal or a new habit, ex it off the to-do list – mark it as complete. After 2 or 3 days of this you will have an “ex-marked” chain of successful events (WINS). Now, your job is don’t break the chain.

There is one caveat with the Seinfeld Strategy. Choose a task that is meaningful enough to make a difference, but simple enough that you can get it done.

In what areas of your life do you need to build momentum? Where can you create a personal series of wins to get closer to a goal or established in a new habit? Or perhaps the more appropriate question is, what is keeping you from building momentum? Here are a few situations that you might identify with:

OLD HABIT NEED TO BUILD MOMENTUM WITH… NEW HABIT
Spending a lot of time at work? Your Family & Friends
  • Schedule a weekly call to a family member
  • Once a week, text a friend just to see how they are doing
Too busy to exercise? A Fitness Challenge
  • Start tracking your steps, strive for 10,000/day
  • Take a 15-20 minute walk on your lunch break
  • Set an alarm for every 2 hours at work and move (squat, walk, pushups, etc.)
Exercising consistently, but not much change? A Nutrition Challenge
  • Omit one bad eating habit, replace it with a healthy option if needed
  • Limit sugar to under 75 grams per day (it’s tough)
Vacation coming up, concerned about how to finance? A Savings Challenge
  • Set up an automatic transfer to savings every payday (i.e. $75/week = $300/month)
  • Eliminate 1 or 2 trips per week to the coffee shop or your favorite lunch spots – could save $20-25/week = $80-100/month)

Determine why, where, and how you will make small changes to gain momentum towards the new habit you want to develop or goal you want to reach. Need more help? Not to worry – there’s an app for that – aptly named “Momentum”.

Yes, inspired by Seinfeld’s “Don’t Break the Chain” approach, the Momentum app allows you to list a simple task or tasks to complete each day, provides reminders and alerts for accountability, and gives you the pleasure of checking those off the list.

Whether you use an app, a daily check list, a “post-it note system”, or something else as a reminder; empower yourself to create your own momentum. Set yourself up to win everyday by choosing a simple, meaningful, and sustainable task that day-by-day challenges you to become better.

Until next time,

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