Consistency: what you do every day
So how can “consistency” help us focus on goals and attaining our dreams without getting bored, distracted, and derailed?
The word “consistency” can bring to mind the thoughts of something very bore….ing to many. Some personalities thrive on consistent routines while
“Consistency is the hallmark of the unimaginative.”Oscar Wilde
However, Oscar was more focused on stimulating his imagination. He probably consistently wrote and re-wrote to hone his craft.
Many against the idea of consistency as a good thing quote Ralph Waldo Emerson as saying “Consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” However Robert B. Cialdini PH.D., the author of “INFLUENCE The Psychology of Persuasion” wrote extensively about “consistency” and thought this odd. He conducted further research he discovered that this quote was taken out of context and the full quote is actually “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” More from Robert Cialdini below.
What we are interested in talking about is how to use consistency as a tool to trick your mind and set you on a path towards specific goals or dreams.
Consistent Thoughts, Words, and Deed
When it comes to your mind consistent thoughts, words, and deeds are part of your character traits.
Creating consistency to accomplish a goal is
How to Change Your Mindset
Our brains get excited about new things, they don’t like or aren’t stimulated by repetitive behaviors routines – hence the term brain-numbing.
Once you have identified a goal and creating automatic behavior patterns your brain doesn’t have to think too hard about what you are trying to achieve.
Tricking Your Brain
Consistency can be a powerful tool or practice for your brain. In the book “INFLUENCE The Psychology of Persuasion” by Robert B. Cialdini PH.D., Robert discusses how commitment and shortcuts enable our brain to respond quickly and mindlessly, i.e. these shortcuts are triggers that create desired automatic behavior patterns.
#1 Commitment Once you’ve made up your mind about changing your mindset the first thing you must do is commit to it. That commitment can be in the form of identifying a goal, a dream, or a desired action. It helps if the goal is S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound). Some people can commit simply by writing down their goal. Others need to share it with one or more persons.
#2 Create Shortcuts Creating shortcuts with help your brain not to have to think and rethink about the goal that you are committing to. In the book referenced above Cialdini discusses how these shortcuts enable our brain to respond quickly and mindlessly, i.e. these shortcuts are triggers that create desired automatic behavior patterns.
To Be Consistent Try To Do These Things Daily
Each day you should try to think, say, write, and do something related to the goal or dreams you are committed to. The more you do this, the more routine it will be come. And soon you will not have to think about the goals you are trying to achieve, they will already be in the forefront of your mind. This can be accomplished with repetitive thoughts and statements as well a focused action.
- Thinking/Speaking: Repetitive statements can be prayers, mantras, or simply reviewing your goals.
- The Magic of Writing it Down: we could give countless examples of the power of the written word. Whether you write your intention for the day, a daily plan, new thoughts in a journal or re-write your goals… there is more power than you could believe.
- Do at least 1 small action per day or per week. Identify some actionable items. Or at a minimum
committo reciting your goal, mantra, and/or write it daily.
The bottom line is the more consistently (daily) you think about something, talk about it, write about it, and do something towards accomplishing it … the more likely it is that you will achieve your goal.
Then, once you’ve set this goal setting behavior up in a way that works for you, once you accomplish a goal then set another one. Create a “Goal Setting Practice” and keep your brain in this state of expecting to work on the things that are important to you.