Have you ever started on a new venture, let’s say training for a road race, with a simple 12 week running plan but by the time you were done crafting your prep plan, it resembled a 62-step assembly manual for Ikea furniture? What started as a slow and steady escalation of hours run-per-week, turned into a full-scale nutrition regime/cross-training/yoga camp/intermittent fasting/Pilates program that spanned about 40 hours a week without rest days.
Yeah, I do that. I start with a simple plan and then add and add until I can barely keep up the pace. It starts from an honest place. I’m excited - eager to reach the amazing goal I have set for myself. Once I start, I might realize the original plan was missing a few elements which I could easily supplement with an additional course or protocol. As I become more immersed, more gaps appear and I quickly add additional items to the learning agenda until I am so overwhelmed that I consider throwing in the towel all together.
In theory, I have created the most comprehensive plan possible which left no stone unturned. In reality, I have allocated about 5 hours a day to sleep and oops, it looks like I forgot to schedule time to shower.
The good news is there is a remedy for this goal-threatening case of ‘Good Intention-itus’. If you ever feel like you are overwhelmed by the plan you have built for yourself and your big goal, take a moment to examine each element of the plan through the following filters:
1. Value: Is this truly goal-critical? What overall value does it bring me and my ability to commit to this goal? What brings the most value and the least value and why?
2. Timing: Is the timing of each item necessary? What can be delayed or the intensity/time commitment reduced? How does the current timing affect my ability to stick to the plan and is that serving me?
3. Multi-Task Myth: Can I half-ass this effort or does this require my full ass? (you know what I mean!) In other words, is it helping or hurting my effort when I try to absorb/learn/implement all these things at once or do some of these items require my undivided attention? What are all of the consequences (good and bad) of overlapping tasks and is that serving me?
Take time to honor your “Why” for this goal and apply it to all the items in your plan. Does it all have to be done? Does it all have to be done right now? These are questions you can an implement to help you refine your plan of attack into a more mindful, achievable strategy that will still lead you to your ultimate goal.