Founder – Chief Change Optimist – Author – Host – Speaker – TV/Radio Personality – Mentor
Ariane de Bonvoisin - Founder and Chief Change Optimist

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Monday, June 23, 2008

How's Your Follow Through?

I was interviewed recently on XM Satellite Radio and the discussion was all about what makes someone follow through on their goals—and why so many of us don't. Last week, I wrote about the difference between being interested in making a change, and actually committing to that change.
Here are some common characteristics of people who follow through. Some require internal motivation, and one in particular results from what we allow ourselves to receive and benefit from via the outside world (read: you can't be successful at change in a vacuum.) As you read through these, think about which ones you feel confident about, and which might need a bit more reinforcement, work or getting outside your comfort zone.

Those who follow through on change:

Have a team around them.
They let other people help them, guide them, coach them, give them advice and feedback. They are teachable and open minded. They have a team of people who believe they can change and will keep them accountable and committed until they reach their goal. Sometimes the people on your team don't want you to change, so that creates a push-pull dynamic. Think—who is on your team? Are they supporting your change?

Take small actions regularly.
To experience greater success more frequently (and keep yourself moving forward!) break down a big goal or change into lots of smaller actions. Then its not so overwhelming. You can't run a marathon thinking about mile 22...even the top runners just do a mile at a time. Actions show you, people around you and the universe that you are serious! Are you actively pursuing your dreams?

Connect to the bigger picture.
Visualize the reason for your goal. Identify the true longing of your heart. That's your fuel and what activates your change muscle! Connect this to joy and pleasure—not to the pain of changing. Strengthen the joy that will come from achieving this change. Where does your joy come from?

Recognize and embrace fear.
Our greatest goals are often linked to our greatest fears. People who are good at change simply know this, so if you are feeling that fear, its a good sign! Welcome it—that fear means you are close to finding something that tugs at your heart, that is truly aligned for you. What are you afraid of?

Have a high amount of self love and self esteem.
Most people do not think they are worthy of a big dream, or a change in career, or a great relationship, so they settle and don't change what's not working. How would you act if you really loved yourself now?

As you continue with your personal changes, take time to assess what's pulling you forward and what might be holding you back. How's your follow through?



Ariane, this is fantastic! Exactly what I needed! I have seen several huge life changes in the past two years and have still a few more directly in front of me.

I keep reminding myself that once I get to 'the other side' it will have all been worth it. Normally this is enough to push me onward, but it was like yesterday all the past and looming changes ganged up and 'jumped me,' leaving me an emotional mess.

Then an interesting thing happened. I was on my computer trying to log into my email account when I glanced at the screen. It turned out, I had my fingers on the wrong keys which resulted in 'typos.' In my error, I had typed the name of a good friend. WOW! Talk about 'signs.' I immediately called her and she helped get me back on track and feeling positive and once again excited about the future. "Have a team around you."

I had planned on slogging through the tears and sadness alone, not wanting to burden my friends but this little 'sign' told me differently. And it was right. And then your blog today, further reinforced what I need to do to get through all of this.

I really think we all need to teach our children this skill--dealing with change! Ariane, congratulations on a fantastic book, blog and website. You're teaching us all probably THE most important thing we need to be happy and successful in life! Thank you!

  • By dinae1
  • on 6/6/09 10:38 AM EST

WOW!! What great suggestions!

I am in the midst of some changes, (they feel major to me). Have started viewing them as opportunities. Oh, the excitement rising within -- I can hardly wait to see what happens next.

Have started a "things to be thankful for" daily journal, which seems to be fueling energy to do this, adding to the forward motion.

Fear and doubt have disappated and I'm finally stepping out to help others. As the days go by, there are more & more opportunities to do just that.

Have managed to let go of the need to control & let the Creator of all, orchestrate every move. Am just going with the flow.

Life is so full of promise!! so exciting!! so joyous!!

Thank you for being you! And being there for all of us here at the First30Days!