Hit reset on 2020 with some new goals!
Emma shares some insights on goals, why she's passionate about them and how they helped her open not one pole studio but TWO! 🙌 you are in for a treat, so grab a cup of tea and snuggle up - get ready to be INSPIRED!
Spending a decent portion of this year in lockdown (don’t do the maths for what percentage that was...) has gotten a lot of us thinking about the future! What are our life goals, are we doing the right thing with our life?
Meeting goals is something I’m pretty passionate about, and I’ve totally seen the results of how setting small achievable goals can lead overall to one big life change and meeting bigger goals! I’ve set myself many goals over the years, and I’ve achieved some but definitely not others. The ones I came up with a solid plan, and put everything into are the ones that came true.
I’ll take you back in time a bit. I started 2018 with two full-time jobs. One which made me really unhappy, but paid the bills, my 8-5 “muggle job” in sales and marketing. The other that didn’t pay me at all, but made me so happy, my little studio Pole Dance Wanganui (now known as Altitude Pole Whanganui). I’m not one to normally do new year’s resolutions, but that year I did set a life goal to try to make an income from something that actually made me happy.
My life now wasn’t actually something Past Emma thought was achievable at a first glance, and Past Emma never would have thought that 2 years later she’d be running two Altitude studios and have given up that day job completely, turning pole into her life!
That’s where breaking your big goals down into smaller, achievable goals, makes it way easier to tick them off, and make progress towards a bigger goal. That’s how I started. When I first spoke to Karry about the opportunity to make my studio an Altitude, I was adamant it wasn’t going to work for me. Then after speaking to her and looking into it further, breaking it down into small parts along the way started to make it look much easier.
So with the bigger goal set to relaunch my studio as Altitude, I came up with some action points such as (a) make the finances work so I can quit my full time job to do this and at least be able to eat 2 minute noodles (b) make a business plan and get professional support with accountants and lawyers, and (c) figure out where you live because your husband got a job in Auckland and you sold your house and you’re relaunching a studio in Whanganui #curveballs. But as each little action point got ticked off, the bigger goal of working in a job I loved became more and more achievable! #altitudelife
So you might have some really big goals - you might want to be the greatest, most flexible pole dancer in the whole world, or you want to retire early and never work a day again so you can pole every day! Great! So let’s start looking at breaking those massive goals into smaller achievable goals and action points.
If you’ve done a goal setting workshop before, you’ve probably seen these words before.
Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Timed.
What do we mean by each of those?
Specific: define who is involved, is it just you that is involved, or does it involve your partner, your cat, your bestie? What you want to accomplish, and where it will happen. Do you need to move to make it happen, or are you in the right spot now? Last of all, why are you doing this? Meeting your goals is going to take some effort, so make sure that goal has a why!
Measurable: ask yourself can you actually track this goal? How will you know when you achieve it? Rather than saying “I want to get stronger” say “I want to be able to do this entire conditioning track with 1kg ankle weights on without tapping out”, or for flexibility “I want to get touch down in my front splits on both sides”. For some goals, you might need to get creative or ask for a good way to measure this (e.g. there’s some great angle measuring Apps you can get to literally track in degrees your splits flexibility)! But if you don’t have a plan for measuring it, you’ll never know if you got there.
Achievable: make it a realistic goal. It shouldn’t be too easy, you don’t want to be resetting your goals every few days, but also don’t make it too hard. For example, if I set my goal that I want to do a crazy flexible pole move like the Rainbow Marchenko in 6 months, that is probably a bit unrealistic for me considering I am not even close to being able to do that level of flexibility on the floor, let alone upside down up a pole! When I broke my ankle I set my goal that in 6 months I wanted to be able to get my toe point back to a flat line. It was going to be a hard goal, but achievable if I worked consistently on it. Spoiler alert: I achieved this one!
Relevant: is this goal you are setting consistent with your other goals? Can they be achieved together or will you need to sacrifice from one goal in order to achieve your other goals? Make sure you’re selecting compatible goals if you’re setting more than one.
Timed: when are you going to complete this goal by? This is really important, and too often we see people setting achievable goals so far out in the future that it loses a sense of urgency. If you achieve all your goals in the next 3 months, awesome! You can then set yourself another set of goals. This process is not a one-time thing, you can do this constantly throughout the year! But set your achievable goals too far in the future, sometimes it’s easy to put them in the “I’ll get to it later” category… which I’ll let you in on a secret… “later” almost never arrives.
Ok. So we kind of know what we’re looking for in setting a goal. But what about achieving it?
If your goal is to be more flexible, or achieve a new move, what are your action points?
If you want to get stronger and survive a grueling strength class and break only the tiniest of sweats with all those weights cause you’re so strong and fit, what is going to help you get there?
If you want to get up on stage and show all your friends and family how amazing you are at pole, what do you have to do?
It’s very easy to set a goal, but it is also very easy to break it simply by not giving yourself the action points and having the discipline to keep working on it. If you have a pole goal and you’re not sure of how to get there, ask your studio if you can book a private goals session with one of your instructors!
I want you to make a pact with yourself, that the goals you set yourself are going to be something you can achieve, and will work to achieve. Think about how you are going to feel when you achieve that goal, what will achieving this goal mean to you?
To meet my goals I had to do a pretty big mental switch, I let my internal Gryffindor take the reins from my Ravenclaw side, and started using my nerdy planning skills to help me take a few calculated risks and achieve things I never thought possible.
So please remember, the only person that can make you achieve your goal is yourself. Have pole goals? Your teachers can’t make you turn up to class, they can’t make you practice at home, they can only support you through this. You are in control of whether these goals succeed. If you tell yourself you CAN do it, and you continue to use that goal as the driving factor behind every decision you make, you CAN.
Reaching big goals doesn’t have to be something that only “other people” do, you can too! But as Britney once said…