Sound Familiar?

Does this sound familiar? You have a goal you want to achieve around a change or objective you want to make in your riding. You get all excited about making it happen. During the first week or so of your action towards your goal you feel pretty committed and follow through regularly on creating the change you need to achieve your goal. Then slowly you begin to do less and less action steps that will get you closer and closer to the goal. It begins to feel like a lot of work. You get discouraged and eventually your actions toward your goal get less and less. If this feels familiar you are among friends as this is normal human behavior. It is called the emotional cycle of change.  Don Kelley and Daryl R. Conner did research around this in the 1970’s. A simple explanation is stage one is uniformed optimism. That is where the thought of the new change is exciting but there is no real sense of reality around the hard work that is needed to create the change and achieve a goal. The next stage is informed pessimism. This is where the reality sinks in that the change is going to take hard work. It is also the stage when many people give up. They lose sight of the value of the change. After giving up there is a real sense of discouragement and self-judgment.  But if a good vision and plan have been laid out for the change it is more likely that you won’t give up and you will continue on to the next stage of informed optimism. You will understand that there will be some hard work but really connect to the value of continuing on and achieving your goal. You will have more confidence that you will reach your goal because you have created new positive thoughts and established new habits. The final stage is the achievement of the goal and it is where the change is sustainable.

Create a Plan

Having a good plan and vision in place will help support you to achieving your goal. You will take a realistic look at what action steps need to occur and what roadblocks may get in the way. Then you can plan for ways to manage any roadblocks and bumps in the road. It is also important to have small achievable steps along the way that can be celebrated regularly. This keeps up the sense of optimism and joy and you work towards a goal. You don’t get so stuck on looking at the big goal which can seem overwhelming and discouraging. Instead you build into you plan small steps that build upon one another to get you where you want to go. With this plan in place you can then regularly assess your progress and make any adjustments needed as you move forward. This is very mindful approach as it helps you stay in the moment and stay connected to the joy of riding and not get so caught up in future wants and desires. So what is it you want to achieve with your riding? Remember this is your plan and goal. Make a goal that is an achievable reach for you now and then build upon that for your next goal.

If you would like support and help in creating a plan and maintaining accountability contact me about my one-on-one and group coaching opportunities. You can schedule a free discovery call here:

Don Kelley and Daryl R. Conner, “The Emotonal Cycle of Change,” in JE Jones and JW Pfeifer, eds.. The 1979 Annual Handbook for Group Facilitators (San Diego, Calif.: University Associates, Inc., 1979). 31. Ibid., 118; Ronald Havelock, The Change Agent’s Guide to Innovaton in Educaton. (Englewood Clifs, NJ, Educatonal Technology Publicatons, 1973)