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I’m sure you’ve heard it before; the key to successfully reaching a goal the ability t o be consistent.

It’s quite a buzz at the minute, with affirmations like incremental progress day after day is more realistic and achievable than taking one huge leap forward every now & then.

In fact clichés we’ve known for most of our lives are that deeply engrained we probably don’t think about their true meaning any more hint at the same principle.

- Rome wasn’t built in a day.

- The hare & the tortoise.

In business, its the principle of of Continuous Improvement, which is a discipline all of its own that brings a host of ‘management speak’ terms like;

- You can’t boil the ocean all at once, do it a teaspoon at a time.

- go for the low hanging fruit.

- Consistent action over perfection

And while there a whole lot of truth in all of these phrases, and we’re all fully aware of the philosophy that progress doesn’t happen overnight, it takes weeks, months or even years of consistent progress.

Why then do so many of us struggle to make progress in the some areas where we want to grow?

For me, I think it’s the application of the term consistency, and what does that actually look like on day to day basis.

In short, ‘How do I get consistent…?’

And exactly what it is that your trying to be consistent with isn’t too critical, theres probably some common things, but hopefully what I’m about to go through will be useful, whatever you goal is.

You could be trying to go to the gym 3 times a week, every week.

You could be trying to hit a specific calorie or macro goal everyday.

You could be aiming for a specific time in range with you blood glucose.

What stops you being consistent?

You’re probably familiar with the scenario, you set out a plan to work towards something, it sounds fantastic in your head…you envisage everything working together like a well oiled machine.

“I’ll do [insert action here] on Mondays, Tuesday I’ll [an action here]. Wednesday I’ve got x on so I’ll do that instead…” 📆

And so on…

No doubt you start off really well.

Week one & you’ve smashed it - you’re on fire 🔥 you’re feeling ‘I’ve got this!’

Week two in the bag any you’re feeling in the groove.

Week three…and boom, real life hits.

It might not be anything big, maybe a stroppy teenager that needs a long conversation one evening when you’d planned to be at the gym, a flat tyre that on your way home from work that had to change your plans for the evening meal.

Or maybe it is something bigger, a holiday or business trip away and you wont have full control over the food available, or maybe you won’t be able to get to the gym, or if you can you won’t have the equipment your used to.

No matter what it is, something will come up that will throw you off plan, because thats just life!

Now it would be really easy to say, well ‘that’s just life’ and leave it there, but I’m hoping to be able to offer some advice that you can put into action to help you stay consistent.

Firstly, when you’re planning out you goals, spend a little time to understand in your own mind, what are you negotiable’s (the things that are nice to have, but you’d be prepared to sacrifice) and what are your non-negotiable’s (the things that no matter what you need to make sure they happen).

When to negotiate

Let’s say your goal is to build muscle & your method is a resistance training program, in the gym 4 days a week.

Think about the times when you might not be able to get to the gym 4 days a week. Is this something that you’re prepare to negotiate on, would you be happy that if you had a business trip one week you might only make twice or even less?

If that thought doesn’t fit well, you feel that you don’t want to sacrifice the progress towards your goal for the sake of a business trip, then its time to start thinking of some strategies to put into action when that business trip comes along…that could be making sure that your hotel has a gym and that you plan in time in your itinerary to make sure you get to go to the gym.

Or you may decide, well, missing a couple sessions isn’t that bigger deal and the socialising on the business trip is more important to you.

Whatever the decision is for you thats perfectly fine…but the frustration comes when you decide that something is a non-negotiable, the circumstances put this to the test and you don’t have a strategy to deal with it and have to forego your non-negotiable.

The slippery slope

When you have to forego a non-negotiable it causes massive stress and frustration at the time, but it also make the next test of your non-negotiable easier to let go of, and the next, and the next, then before you know it, you can’t remember you the last you did actual go to the gym.

So yes, consistency is the key to success, but the key to consistency is having pre-thought out strategies so that when life comes along and wants to mess with your non-negotiables you already have an action plan - you know whether you want to fight that battle & if you do, you know exactly what to do.

Now, have a think about your goals, the actions you’re taking to get yourself there. Do you have a plan in place when something throws a spanner in the works?

I hope you’ve enjoyed this blog and theres something you can put into action.

If you want to work on developing your fitness, build a better relationship with food or understand how your blood glucose reacts, then get in touch today to work with me one to one and tackle the things most important to you.

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