week93Today is my birthday. Like many, I have stopped counting years ago, as age is just a number and numbers don’t matter. It’s all about how you live your life and how well you care for your self well-being.

Some of us love our special days and enjoy it with great festive celebrations. Dinners. Parties. Gifts. Trips. Others keep it on the down low and treat it as just another ordinary day.

Birthdays are milestone markers. They wrap up one chapter and start a new one. A clean upcoming year. A fresh slate. A new beginning. And if you weren’t happy where you were yesterday or yesteryears, well, here’s your chance. No one can argue otherwise, after all, it is your one and only day a year; the one day where no one can, or should, challenge you.

So what will I be doing this year on my special day? No big parties with friends. No celebratory trip planned, as of yet, however since I do love to travel, perhaps a later trip I will label a post birthday celebration. Actually, right now I’m working from home – snowed in from a nor’easter snowstorm – with birthday wishes from family and friends via texts, phone calls, emails, and social media mentions starting since the day before. If it weren’t for the snowfall, it would be the gym and the office in that order, followed by ideally an aerobics class afterward and then dinner at a favorite restaurant with one of my two brothers. Dinner with my other brother occurred a few nights ago as an early celebration since I was near his town.

Like both my brothers, I love to achieve – a born driven go-getter – and there is no better time then now to create some new goals to achieve than on a birthday. It’s an idea time to reflect and reminisce the years gone by then plot and plan the next upcoming bright ones ahead tagged with new aspiring goals. And if the years don’t seem bright at the moment, now is the perfect time to make certain they will be.

Setting and obtaining goals first takes a true steadfast mindset filled with determination and disciplinary actions to make your efforts and hard work pay off. The following are five steps to make your goals reality.

1. Commitment.
When planning your goals, select the one that is your highest priority and focus on that goal first. Concentrating on one goal at a time gives you the clarity you will need to achieve it. Then develop a realistic plan of action with a timeframe and benchmarks.

2. Discipline.
Stay focus with your eye on the prize and keep it going. Find the time. Every day, every week, whatever it takes to make it happen! This is the period that divides the go-getting achievers and the no-drive couch potatoes. First go at it didn’t work? Try again. Try another. Just make it materialize.

3. Consistent.
Remember the story of the tortoise and the hare? Never waver. Don’t back off. Staying consistent is a key ingredient to achieving your goal. Keep it going and stay persistent with your efforts and eventually you will achieve the results you are seeking.

4. Faith in Self.
Believe. It will happen with time and your hard work. Thicken your skin and resist listening to those who say that you will fail. Show them wrong. Prove it to yourself. There have been many before you that were told they won’t succeed and they do. Alexander Graham Bell, Charlie Chaplin, Winston Churchill, Charles Darwin, Walt Disney, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Bill Gates, Stephen King, Isaac Newton, J.K. Rowling, KFC Colonel Harvard David Sanders, Jerry Seinfeld, Dr. Seuss, Steven Spielberg, Socrates, Vincent Van Gogh, Vera Wang, Oprah Winfrey, F.W. Woolworth and others who believed in themselves and, despite of the odds against them, went on to find great success.

5. Have Heart.
Movie character Rocky Balboa once said, “Every champion was once a contender that refused to give up.” You must have heart and passion. You have to want it and want it bad. The achiever may not always be the one who finishes first or at the first go but often the person who fell down a few downs along the way, brushed him or herself off, and got back up to finish what they started – all because they had heart.

Stay committed, remain discipline, be consistent, keep faith in yourself, and have heart and you will achieve your goal.

Be Fit. Be Strong. Be Well.