For the longest time I’ve been trying to find ways in which to help myself stay on the right path for my long list of goals. I’ve listened to paraliminals, read books, bought calendars to list out what I plan to do, meditated, told people my plans, etc., but nothing has worked for me.
Being vegan has been a goal of mine for quite some time. I get on the vegan wagon and then I get off because I’m shaking from starvation due to lack of meal planning. When you’ve allowed yourself to get that hungry, your motivation and follow-through flies right out of the window. Or at least mine does. “A goal without a plan is just a wish,” rings true for a vegan lifestyle. Careful planning is necessary in order to succeed.
A few months ago, I was listening to a podcast with Tim Ferriss interviewing some person or another; he asked the guy how he stuck with his goals. I think the guy’s goals had to do with writing a certain number of words per day in order to finish a book. I listened carefully because, as a sometimes writer (like now), I write like mad for a few weeks and then stop for a few. I haven’t been consistent for years for whatever reason (no time to write, no ideas about what to write about, life gets in the way, any other excuse du jour). Turns out the writer is successful with his goals because he uses a site called StickK.com. I was intrigued but not enough to check the website out right away.
Sometimes ideas take time to percolate in my brain. StickK has been with me since that interview even though I did not take any action, especially not for writing. Fast forward to this past Tuesday, and I was starting to feel like I wasn’t going to achieve any of my 2017 goals and here it as almost October. Then I remembered StickK. I immediately went to the website and created an account. While there, I decided it was time to go for the vegan diet goal. I wrote, “I commit to eat a 100% plant-based diet.” You may be thinking that’s all well and good, but why would typing out your goal on some website where I am anonymous be any different than writing it here? Good question! There’s a financial incentive why. I committed to giving money to an anti-charity. In other words, if I don’t follow through on my goal, StickK is going to charge my credit card the amount I pledged to a Republican PAC. Gasp. Yeah, no way is that happening. I would never willingly give any money to the Republican Party. BTW, they send the donation anonymously so that people like me won’t get inundated with spam emails from 45 begging for money for his “campaign.” Mmmmhmmmm…more like his mounting legal bills.
I have to check-in each week on the same day, so for me that will be every Tuesday. If I don’t check in by Wednesday, StickK assumes that I’ve not met my goal and will charge my card and give it to the Republicans (YIKES). Needless to say, this goal is no longer relegated to ‘it might be nice’ to achieve to a ‘you have all my attention!’ In order to make sure the goal never leaves my mind, it’s one of the few open tabs on my computer. I see that tab/website every single day, and multiple times per day.
The site asks you how long you want to track this goal. I typed in 8 weeks because after 8 weeks, I should be on the right track. If I slip up after 8 weeks, however, I will get back on the train/website and start again. Or if I feel myself saying, “Just one slice of cheesecake won’t hurt,” then I will quickly logon to StickK and make the goal of having a 100% plant-based diet my ‘thang’ again. Eight weeks seems to be a good amount of time for a goal. After all, it’s been over 8 weeks of being Facebook free and I’m no longer having any cravings.
It appears many other people are using the StickK site to achieve their goals. As of this writing, $32,456,992 is on the line. That’s a lot of goals! Some of the goals people want to achieve include ‘no alcohol for 80 days’ (I can relate), ‘drink 8 glasses of water a day’ (ditto), ‘read a book every month’ (cough), ‘daily writing’ (this is getting uncomfortable), and various other health related goals.
If you’re one of those many people who need accountability, StickK allows you to have a referee. The referee decides if you’ve achieved your goal or not. You can make it anyone you want. I opted not to have a referee although I may reconsider. So far I’ve been 100% compliant, but it is only Day Two. I’ll let you know what I decide but I’ve told one of my daughters (the only one still at home, sniff) that I’ve decided to be vegan, and she helped me find something to eat at Urban Plates yesterday. If I even think of straying away from my goal, I can count on her to bring me back.
Do you have a goal you’d like to achieve? Want to start something you’ve always wanted to start or, at the opposite end of the spectrum, do you have something that needs to get finished? Do you have exercise, health, education, travel, or other goals that you can’t quite seem to commit to? Give StickK a shot. You have nothing to lose (but money) and everything to gain. Don’t let 2017 leave without achieving one goal important to you.
I’ll let you know how successful I am. My goal ends on November 21st.