Do you desire lasting change? Have you tried to declutter only to find yourself buried in stuff? Have you tried to lose weight only to bounce back to being overweight? Have you made plans to change that did not come through? You’re not alone.
If you’re one of millions of people who struggle to create lasting change, I have a solution. It’s simple. Write.
Lasting Change Can’t Be That Simple
I hear you protest. It can and it is. Writing your desires, your dreams, your goals is an action step. Writing gets you started. Writing motivates you to keep going. Writing leads to lasting change. Look at these numbers from a 1979 Harvard study:
The 13% of the class who had goals, but did not write them down was earning twice the amount of the 84% who had no goals. The 3% who had written goals were earning, on average, ten times as much as the other 97% of the class combined!
You Can’t Argue With Harvard
You can’t argue with those numbers. You can join the successful people who practice writing. I’ve been a writer in one form or another for most of my life. In the last few years I’ve decided to take writing more seriously. I’m a writer. So I decided to start acting like one.
I’m using writing as a way to reach my own goals, to push myself forward. This blog started with The 10 Step Challenge To Simple Living. Although my goal is to help others, I wrote that post to challenge myself, too. In fact, each post at Hip Diggs is a personal challenge. I’ve just decided to share my challenges with you so that you might be motivated to make changes in your own lives.
Changes I’ve Made Since Starting Hip Diggs
- I’m eating out less often.
- I’m spending less time online.
- I’m continually uncluttering.
- I’m making a point to exercise.
- I’m intentionally relaxing.
- I’m paying off debt.
These are just a few of my successes since starting Hip Diggs. If I hadn’t written these things down, I’d be less motivated. You’re much more likely to follow through with things that you put down in writing. Writing adds permanence and that leads to lasting change.
I’m not an expert on goal setting, but I understand the basics. If you want to create lasting change in your life, you need to:
- Write goals down: Writing is the starting point. It helps to hold you accountable. Unwritten goals are fleeting and less likely to take root.
- Make goals short, attainable, and measurable: Keep goals short, simple, and doable. Many people fail because their goals are too complex or impossible to complete. Be sure to be specific. Don’t just say you want to lose weight. Say you want to lose ten pounds in three months.
- Set deadlines: Some people prefer specific dates. I keep deadlines loose. Rather than saying I’ll publish a book on March 15, 2015, I say I’ll publish a book in the spring of 2015. That gives me more flexibility and lightens the pressure a little.
- Review your goals regularly: Don’t just write your goals down and stuff them in a drawer. View them regularly. Update them when needed.
- Make goal setting a routine: Many people set goals at New Years. I’m not opposed to that, but I tend to set goals ALL YEAR. When I complete goals, I add new ones. It’s a constant process.
Written Goals Lead To Lasting Change
Since I started writing my goals down a few years ago, I’ve accomplished more than I ever imagined:
- I’ve written a trilogy.
- I’ve written two ebooks.
- I’ve written a book of poetry.
- I’ve written dozens of songs.
- I’ve started several blogs.
- I’ve increased my online presence.
I’m just getting started. In the next few years, I expect exponential growth in many areas of my life. Here are just a few of my future goals:
- Downsize my house.
- Bike more than drive.
- Become debt free.
- Sell the movie rights to the cult trilogy.
- Start the Live Simple program.
- Write many more books.
- Write more songs and poems.
I’m not telling you about my successes and goals to brag. I’m sharing the secret of turning dreams into reality. Write. Put your dreams on paper. Write your goals down. Writing is the first step to creating lasting change in any area of your life. Grab a pencil, pen, or laptop, and get writing today.