One of the central factors in failing to reach that long term goal is the reactive drive for short term results. Often we get weary when we’re not where we want to be and attempt to cope by reaching for instantly gratifying solutions. Instead of simply being grateful and embracing the process, we attempt to take short cuts and/or find ways to cope with our circumstances. Both lead to unhealthy decisions and shortcomings in the long run.
For instance, we have a goal of losing so many pounds in a matter months. We can choose to be consistent and embrace the process, achieving our goals a little at a time or we can be reactive and embrace immediate solutions. When we choose quick fixes we rely on methods that are unsustainable and we can choose to self medicate with more junk food to make ourselves feel better, we only deepen our negative emotions about our lack of results. Both lead to failure in the end and typically put you right back where you started, or in an even worse position.
So, what is the solution? Gratitude… Gratitude? Yes. Gratitude. Here are three reasons why gratitude can help you achieve your goals.
- Motivation – Many people believe that gratitude leaves you in a position to be content to a fault and not strive for more. However, the opposite is actually true. Studies have shown that those who are grateful actually find themselves more motivated and successful at striving to meet their goals.
- Stress – As I’ve stated before, one of the ways that we cope with stress is to over indulge or look for short cuts. In the end, those methods don’t successfully help us deal with stress in our lives. They may feel attractive in the moment but they don’t eliminate stress. They actually create more stress. Gratitude is a much better mechanism for stress management.
- Patience – Gratitude can significantly increase your patience. It helps to keep you thinking positively and allows you to be content as you move forward toward the goal. Discontentedness is what leads to rash decision making which is bad for goal achievement. When we are not grateful in the season that we’re in, we will have a much harder time waiting for the better season to come along. On the other hand, when we are content we are more likely to be patient enough to get the results we really desire.