Consistency Is Boring? Think Again!
Each month, I feature one of my top-ten core values. This is my fifth: Embrace Consistency.
Ever heard people say they can cook —but not bake? Or that cooking is an “art” and baking is a “science?” There’s good reason. The difference between cooking and baking is a great way to explore the core value of consistency!
Cooking encourages improvisation and experimentation. Sure, you may follow a recipe. But if you’re in the mood for extra seasoning, and you throw in another dash of red pepper, you likely won’t ruin the meal. You’ll just have a spicier version.
On the other hand, baking calls for precision and accuracy. You can’t just toss in more baking soda and expect your cake to turn out right. In fact, it won’t even be edible! Baking has rules. It requires consistency.
In or out of the kitchen, consistency is a major driver of success in reaching your goals.
We have the best intentions …
Consistency is so important I almost put it as number one in my list of top-ten core values. But let’s be honest. When most of us set a goal, we have every intention of working on it consistently. We really believe we’ll do whatever it takes to achieve it — day in, day out!
So, if I’d talked about consistency as the first core value … your eyes would’ve glazed right over.
Get your copy of my free worksheet. It features this month’s core value, Embrace Consistency. Expect a new worksheet every month.
By now — if you’ve been reading my posts and working on a goal for a few months or more — you’re at a place in your journey where being consistent matters more than ever.
And … there’s a good chance you’ve started to get tired.
Or frustrated. You feel things aren’t happening quickly enough for you!
You may even be tempted to take some time off. To come back to your goal later.
Related: Don’t Move the Goalpost
Being consistent means staying focused and committed even when things are going more slowly than planned. Or amid distractions such as summer vacations and holidays.
It means sticking to your original “recipe” for achieving your goal. And repeatedly doing the things that need to be done.
And by the way (spoiler alert!), even after you reach your goal … you’ll still need consistency to maintain success.
Below are some of my favorite tips — or Power Challenges — to develop consistency. See how they might help you!
Power Challenge #1: Create routine.
Now hold on! Some of you reading this are about to skip over this section about routines. Your creative mind wants no part of it! Stay with me, it’s worth it.
Routines train your body and mind. And, they are so helpful! They save you from having to think, analyze or decide. You don’t ask yourself, should I do this now? Or later? Or tomorrow? That kind of questioning leads to procrastination.
A routine combines structure and repetition. It puts you on autopilot — in a good way. After a while, you don’t need to think. You just do it. Muscle memory!
With daily routines, you’re building your future YOU.
So, wherever possible, create consistent action and build routine.
If there’s something you’re going to do daily, try to do it at the same time and place every day. Or, if you’re doing something several times a week, schedule your days and times. Then stick to your schedule.
By completing the routine tasks necessary to reach your goal, you free up time, space and energy to devote to the bigger picture. The vision you have for your future.
Consistency builds your reliability and creates momentum. And you develop great habits for building long-term success. Commit to consistency. You’ll be glad you did!
Power Challenge #2: Use inspiring mantras.
If you’ve followed my blog, you know how much I believe in the power of a good mantra! A mantra is a phrase you can say over and over to yourself. Especially when you’re struggling to make a change, learn something new or reach a goal.
Mantras can change your negative thinking into a supportive, motivational mindset. They’re easy to use and quite effective.
Related: The Beautiful Habit of Inspiration
Let’s say you find yourself struggling with consistency. Try repeating a mantra or affirmation that helps you authentically believe in the value of consistency. That highlights the benefits for you.
Consistency is more important than perfection.
Consistency is better than rare moments of greatness.
When I act with consistency, I’m being my best self.
Consistency is something I can learn — just like anything else.
Creating consistency is a new adventure for me.
Consistency is a great way to be kind to myself.
Pick one that deeply resonates with you. Meaning, you feel good when you say it. You love the image it evokes for you.
Now begin working with your mantra. Write it on paper or sticky notes. Post them everywhere! On your bathroom mirror, beside your computer, on the dashboard in your car … you want to see your mantra so often, it gets stuck in your head.
Repeat your mantra to yourself as often as needed. The more you buy into the value of consistency, the easier it becomes to BE consistent!
Keep your mantras fresh!
Mantras should be energizing. Motivating. Inspiring. If you find your mantra is no longer doing the job, that’s normal. Just pick a new one! Changing things up will bring new energy to your positive mindset.
Power Challenge #3: Just. Start. Again.
We all lose focus sometimes. Our mojo flies out the window. We get side-lined, and our goals become just wishes … or distant dreams.
If this happens to you, what should you do? How do you get back on track?
YOU JUST START AGAIN.
“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” — Thomas Edison
Let’s say you’ve made two commitments to yourself. One, you’ll arrive at work on time every day. And two, you’ll reply to your emails first thing.
You do great for about eight days. But then … you start missing the mark.
Your dog gets sick and makes you late. Next day, traffic is a nightmare. The third day, you arrive on time, but you’re not even logged on to your computer when your boss calls an emergency meeting! It’s 2:00 pm before you even check your inbox.
You feel defeated. Wonder if it’s a worthwhile goal anyway. You feel yourself starting to give up.
Instead, take a deep breath.
Acknowledge you’re offtrack. And that you know you can do better.
Don’t beat yourself up about it. Self-criticism won’t help. But do hold yourself accountable simply to start again at the first opportunity you have. No waiting!
When you start over, reset your mindset. Don’t focus on dropped balls and missteps. Focus on how you’re making the conscious choice to start anew.
You can do that anytime you want. As many times as you need.
Related: The Freedom of Breaking Out of Your Comfort Zone
And what if you have to restart repeatedly throughout your journey? It’s okay. As long as you stick to your plan a little longer between each restart, you’re making progress. And that’s something to celebrate and build upon.
“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing, that’s why we recommend it daily.” — Zig Ziglar
Still Think Consistency is Boring?
You know, successful people don’t share all the same traits — or all the same values.
But they do have one thing in common: they’re consistent and persistent in their actions. Whatever they do, they do it regularly. Not “occasionally.”
If they go to church, they go every Sunday … not just some Sundays. If they’re focused on diet, they eat right most of the time … not just some of the time.
Whatever it is they believe in, they’re dependable and consistent in doing that thing.
So, what about you?
What are you going to do?
I know you can do this. Committing to consistent action is one more giant step toward becoming the best you that you can be!
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Carla inspires leaders and team members — and provides real-world tips to become the best version of themselves that they can be. Contact her today.