It can often feel like we aren’t doing a good job if the outcome isn’t big or clear enough, or that we must be doing something wrong because our process or expectations are not 100% where we’d like them to be. We often place this pressure on ourselves to be perfect which is totally debilitating. It chips away at our confidence and justifies fear over a lack of action. Just imagine what we could do if we stopped striving to be great all the time, but to show up all the time.
For many of us focusing on perfection is more of a hindrance than it is helpful. It encourages an all-or-nothing mentality that makes us live in fear of failure or disappointment on a day-to-day basis. This can hijack us of the ability to make any progress or at the very least, make the small steps required for the journey towards success even tougher.
Consistency on the other hand is key to any kind of change you want to make and often produces better, sustainable, and longer lasting change. Consistent actions allow for growth, and steady improvement and prioritise the process rather than just the end result. Actions are realistically easier to commit to and are a kinder way to challenge and support ourselves through change. Consistent efforts over time, no matter how little, will often add up to great success under less stress and pressure.
Here are a few ways to be more consistent as you work towards your goals:
1. Take small steps to create a manageable routine
Taking small steps are less scary which makes it easier to start. Gradual changes provide positive reinforcement because once you see and feel the benefits of these steps/changes, you become more motivated and excited to take bigger strides. So, try tweaking your habits or making small lifestyle changes to support your journey towards consistency.
2. Remember your ‘why’
Remembering and knowing your ‘why’ is an important step as it helps you follow through with your plans. While having an accountability partner is great, you need to have the force within yourself that drives you to do things with or without people to cheer you on. Make sure your ‘why’ matters to you.
3. Value progress over perfection
It is genuinely impossible to be perfect in all tasks every single day, especially on the first try. It is easier to work your way up and aim to be better today than the previous day. Whatever skills, habits, or lifestyle changes you are trying to develop, it is important to appreciate how much progress you have made while on your journey because it spurs you on and motivates you to keep going.
4. Be kind to yourself
Life is about making mistakes and not letting those mistakes stop you from trying again. As humans, we will fail at things but the key is to keep moving, keep growing and keep learning. Stop beating yourself and learn to forgive and let go. When you truly begin to accept this, moving forward won’t be so difficult, you’ll realise perfection doesn’t exist.