Remember all of those wonderful resolutions you made with the best of intentions when the new year started? If you’re struggling to recall that list now, you’re not alone. In fact, it’s estimated that about 80 percent of New Year’s resolutions fail by February. To be fair, it’s easy to get distracted by other things as you get back to your regular routine, especially if you’re busy working in the trucking industry. But it’s not too late to re-commit to your goals and get back on track. This is why our value for this month is determination.
The American Psychological Association recommends focusing on one goal at a time rather than stretching your willpower too thin in an attempt to achieve multiple goals. If you didn’t officially make a list of your goals back in January, take a moment to do it now. Pick just one thing on your list and concentrate your efforts on it. Once you achieve this goal, move on to the next thing on your personal to-do list. You may be surprised at how much progress you can make this way.
Further, make it easier to get your determination back in the right gear by breaking your larger goal into a series of smaller goals. If your main goal was to be healthier while on the road, for instance, start with aiming to get about 30 minutes of exercise, at least, 2-3 days a week — more likely to be something a busy trucker can do. Once you get to the point where you’re meeting this part of your goal, incorporate something else that’s good for your health into your routine. Doing so can also give your determination a boost since you’ll have added confidence as you reach each of your mini-goals.
Whether your top goal involves expanding your business or personal improvements like getting more exercise, use the power of positive thinking to your advantage. Envision yourself actually meeting your goals and celebrating your success. Shifting your way of thinking in this way can block out the negative thoughts (e.g., “What if I can’t get enough loads to justify adding another truck or two,” “I know I’ll never have time to exercise anyway”) that can quickly derail your determination.
You can’t really avoid all types of stress, but too much stress can quickly become a determination killer. Over-stressing can also make it easier to default back to your well-established habits. Instead, make an effort to manage stress better by:
• Cutting down on caffeine (more water, less coffee)
• Avoiding nicotine (studies show smoking actually contributes to stress)
• Getting more sleep, or at least more productive sleep, when not on the road
• Talking to a buddy when you do get overwhelmed instead of keeping it inside
• Trying relaxation techniques you can do anywhere (e.g., mindful meditation, deep breathing)
Determination ultimately comes from within. Of course, it doesn’t hurt to give yourself some added motivation to stay on track with your goals. One convenient way for busy truckers to do this is with goal tracking apps that can be easily accessed no matter where you happen to be at any given time. Not only will you be reminding yourself of what you want to achieve, you’ll also be able to cross things off your list with a simple tap as the efforts of your determination pay off.
At Pay4Freight, we’re determined to help you succeed in the trucking business. We offer access to an assortment of programs and resources you’re welcome to take advantage of by exploring our website.