Seeing that there is a distance between us and our dreams can sometimes cause us to lose motivation. Even if you know that the goal will be reached with small steps and you need to be patient, you may lose your way and deviate from your target if you do not realize what is holding you back. A new year is an excellent opportunity to start a clean slate and change your life! Moreover, it is possible to see the effect of this clean sheet in as little as six months. Here are eight steps those in need of radical change should take.


1. Stop Hiding Behind Excuses

Excuses prevent you from taking action. That's why you should start by being honest with yourself. Whatever is keeping you from acting, you have to accept its existence. Acknowledge its existence, know it's there, but still fight for what you have to do. The initial sweet comfort of excuses turns into guilt over time. Moreover, there is no compensation for the time you lost and the opportunities you missed. Therefore, there must be a way to get rid of your excuses.


2. Set Clear Goals

Chasing big goals can be tempting. But for sustainable progress, you need to set measurable and achievable goals. You may even need to develop minimal goals in the beginning to create a habit. For example, if your goal is to lose weight, is it possible to lose twenty kilos in one month? Instead, you can set a goal to be completed in six months. You can exercise twice a week by sticking to your diet for a month. In the second month, your number of exercises can increase to three per week, and after three months to five. When you see that you are a new person at the end of the sixth month, you can enjoy the miracle of small steps.


3. Stick to a Routine

Making good behaviors into your routine will keep you moving regularly. Substitute healthy habits for habits that steal your time and energy. For example, review your sleep patterns. Then take turns taking a look at your habits that cause digital addiction and physical inactivity. Avoid living on autopilot with mindfulness exercises.


4. Realize Your Responsibility

Changing one's life is a personal need; it is not done to prove something to someone else. That's why you will need people to support you on this journey. Share your goals and plans with one of these people. This sharing makes the other person a part of this dream and gives you a responsibility. But fear not, this responsibility will not stress you out. On the contrary, it allows you to cling to your work with the positive effect of that person's trust.


5. Don't Fear Failure

The road to success is full of mistakes. The mistakes you make can affect your career plans and delay you from reaching your goals. Stick to the destination you set, but don't be rigid. Make room for failure with small stretches. Focus on what you can learn from the mistake, not why you made a mistake. With this approach, you can even say "goodbye" to the errors you wear yourself out of after a while.


6. Check Your Roadmap

Controlling how far you've come as you progress towards your goals will increase your motivation. You can use a diary for this. When you look at your diary after a while, you can see what difficulties you have overcome. If you don't like keeping a journal, take note of what you've done towards the goal you've set. This habit not only shows you how far you are left to the destination, but it also shows you how much you have changed your life.


7. Take Care of Your Mental Health

Remember that changing your life is a psychologically challenging journey. Struggling regularly for a goal requires using every ounce of your will for change. You may not feel this in the short term, but if your goals are spread over many years, you can experience burnout syndrome after a while. Therefore, it is helpful to take precautions and learn to be patient and not wear yourself out.


8. Don't Give Up on Physical Activity

Regardless of the goal, the journey to change is a bumpy one for everyone. Don't let your disappointment in the landings drag you back into the swamp of excuses because the stress created by frustration can cause depression. As long as you engage in physical activities, your brain reduces the adverse effects of stress. Thanks to serotonin, dopamine, and endorphins that increase with regular exercise, you can also protect your mental health. For this, you do not need long hours of sportive activities or long training sessions. Frequent walking and occasional cycling also work wonders.


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