Does writing down your goals really help you achieve them?

If you’ve read anything about achieving your goals or sticking to resolutions, you’ve probably heard of the study where students from Harvard were asked to write down their goals.  

The story goes that researchers asked graduating seniors if they had written down their goals for the future. Just three percent had. Those same people were surveyed again twenty years later and the researchers found that the 3% with written goals had accumulated more wealth than the other 97% combined.

Even if you’re one of the few people who haven’t heard this before, it’s a compelling argument, wheeled out regularly by motivational coaches and internet advice gurus. But it turns out, like many of the alternative facts coming out these days, the study never actually happened.  

Here at Go-do.it, despite knowing the original study was a myth,  we thought there must still be something to it, and we were relieved to find we weren’t the only ones.

Dr Gail Matthews at Dominican University in California thought so too, and set out to see if she could prove or disprove the theory. Thankfully, her study found that writing down your goals did indeed help you achieve more. In fact people who wrote down their goals achieved 42% more than people who  just thought about them.

 

Obviously we were stoked that we haven’t all been running around blindly following the advice of a fabricated study. But it got us thinking, what is it about writing down your goals that dramatically increases your chances of success?

 

Get clear on what you want

Recording your goals (on paper or online) gives you clarity. Before you can write something down or add it to a list, you have to think about what you want to do and make a decision about whether it’s important enough for you to commit it to writing. This process gives you much more clarity than simply daydreaming about all the different things you’d like to do.

 

Plus, when you actually write something down, you’re consciously admitting that this is something you want to do. And that’s a lot harder to ignore than a passing thought.

 

So I just write down my goals and that’s it?

Oh wouldn’t it be lovely if all you had to do was make a list and your goals then just magically happened?

 

Think of it like going on holiday. Unfortunately, even though you now know where you want to go, you won’t get there by sitting still. And whilst writing down your goals is an important first step, it’s not the only one.

 

What else can you do to increase your chances?

 

1 – make the goals specific

A lot of  goals don’t happen because they’re really general and it’s hard to know if you’ve actually achieved them. For example, it’s really hard to ‘get fit’ because how do you actually know when you’re ‘fit’?

 

2 – Make a plan

Big goals can seem unachievable, especially if there are a lot of steps you need to take to get there. Making a plan and breaking down what you need to do, will make the path much clearer for you, helping you reduce procrastination and indecision, and making you much more likely to take action.

 

3 – Tell your friends!

There’s nothing like a bit of social pressure to keep you on track.  The Dominican University goals study found that telling your friends about your goals helped people achieve 25% more goals than if they kept them to themselves. The study also showed that you also get added ‘likelihood of achieving your goals’ points if you send them weekly updates on your progress.

 

Want more on how to set effective goals? Check out our step-by-step guide here.

 

How can go-do.it help?

As helping you actually achieve your goals is basically what we live for, writing down your goals is the first step in the go-do.it journey. We’ve got tons of inspiration to get the creative juices flowing and help you pick out your goals. Click here to set your first goals.

But remember, it doesn’t stop there – after you’ve committed your goals to writing, we’ll help you join the dots, by putting you in touch with people who can help you so you actually take action. And soon, we’ll also be running challenges and helping you break down your goals into manageable steps to make it really easy for you.
What are you waiting for? Take that first step today, and set your first goals with go-do.it. We can’t wait to see what you achieve!

 

Ted Talk Tuesday – How We found the Giant Squid

There’s not many tall tales bigger than the giant squid. Maritime legends of enormous beasts large enough to drag boats and any foolhardy souls stupid enough to tangle them down to the depths of the oceans. For many years it was thought that the giant squid was nothing more than a legend.

But all around the world reports would come in of sightings and even very rarely massive specimens would wash up. Baffling locals and exciting scientists. But there was never one caught on film.

Humankind has been looking for the giant squid (Architeuthis) since we first started taking pictures underwater.

Enter Edith Widder a biologist with just one mission. To hunt and film these elusive creatures. And in 2012 she was the first person to ever film one of these incredible animals. In this talk she tells us what it takes to achieve this amazing feat. From the technology to the good old hard work this shows us what can be done with a bit of determination.

 

Ted Talk Tuesday – Sophie Radcliffe – Achieve Your Extraordinary

What makes a person achieve their extraordinary? What gives them that push to make the amazing happen and hit their goals? Sophie Radcliffe is someone who knows a thing or two about doing the incredible.

Sophie has ran, swam and cycled her way around the planet. Each of these adventures have lead her down a path that has not only seen her achieve her goals but grow and expand them. She has gone from working the 9-5 grind that so many of us find ourselves in to becoming a ambassador for adventure. She’s become an adventurer, writer, athlete and model.  Working alongside the UK government she has helped drive change for women in sport. Helping change peoples lives and increasing opportunities. She has taken the steps to not only change her own life but improve the lives of others around her.

This is a truly inspiring talk for anyone finding themselves stuck in a rut and looking for that next big change!

Follow Sophie on her next adventure here.

 

 

Inspirational golden oldies to prove age really is just a number

If you’ve ever worried that you’re getting ‘old’ waaayy too fast, or worse, other people keep telling you to act your age, then we’ve got some serious ammunition to quiet those annoying voices and prove that you really are never too old to do something.

There’s a ton of actual scientific research that shows it genuinely is never too late to start learning something new. And that the old adage of ‘age is just a number’ really is true. (If you missed our post on how you really can teach an old dog new tricks, definitely check it out here.)

But here, we’re going to introduce you to some truly inspirational people who didn’t get the memo that once you reach a certain age, you have to stop doing anything physical and sit around all day drinking tea.

And these just aren’t your average ‘my uncle ran a marathon’ or ‘my nan goes to Pilates’ stories. We’ve got daredevils and record breakers galore, as well as people that would probably put your average 17-year-old gamer to shame!

Meet Tao Porchon-Lynch

Tao, who is 98 years young, was recently awarded the title of “world’s oldest yoga teacher”. And we think old people can’t be flexible! Tao has been crazy about yoga since her childhood, and has been teaching yoga in different countries for almost 50 years. She certainly embodies her motto of ‘there is nothing you cannot do’.

http://www.taoporchon-lynch.com/home.html

Meet Hidekichi Miyazaki

Japanese sprinter, Hidekichi, has been setting world records in the 100m sprint since he took up the sport aged 90. Yes, you read that right, he didn’t start running until he was 90 years old. He recently took the 100m world record for 105 year olds and still holds the 29.83 second record for centenarians. He says he thinks he’s still got a few more years of running in him, and wouldn’t consider giving up yet to show gratitude to all his fans. Such a legend!

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/sep/25/japans-105-year-old-golden-bolt-beats-his-own-world-sprint-record

 

Meet Doris Long

Abseiling isn’t a sport you’d usually associate with the older generation, but that hasn’t stopped Doris abseiling down the 94 metre Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth every year for the past 16 years to raise money for a local hospice. Doris did her first abseil when she was 85, and has been awarded an MBE, as well as the nickname Daring Doris. She said it gets harder every year, but it’s well worth it. And she has no plans on stopping any time soon, saying she lives in hope she’ll still be able to do it next year.

 

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2015/jul/12/doris-long-101-world-abseiling-record-spinnaker-tower

 

Meet George Neal and Ernest Smith

Canadian Pilot soared into the Guinness Book of World Records in 2015 as the world’s oldest, active pilot at the grand old age of 96. He spent more than 15,000 hours flying over 100 different types of aircraft. But George isn’t the only golden oldie cruising through the skies, the new record holder, Ernest Eli Smith is 98 and still regularly flies light aircraft in Iowa today.

 

Meet Larry Macon

Although Larry is quite a bit younger than the rest of our legends, we can’t talk about inspirational older people without mentioning Larry’s incredible achievements. He’s broken the Guinness World Record for most marathons run in a year, not once, or even twice, but FOUR TIMES! His most recent record was 239 marathons in a year. And he did it at the age of 69. That’s 6,261.8 miles in one year and more than one every other day! He didn’t even start running marathons until 1996 when he was 52.

http://www.runnersworld.com/newswire/69-year-old-breaks-record-for-most-marathons-in-a-year

 

So, next time you catch yourself murmuring that you’d love to do something, but that you couldn’t possibly because you’re too old now, or because it’s for young people, bookmark this post, re-read it, and then start making a plan to get it done! Need some help? We’ve got your back. Join us and start doing today!

 

 

Ted Talk Tuesday – The playful wonderland behind great inventions

Inventions, they surround us. Virtually everything you use during a day was once an idea in someones head. From the button you use to do up your jeans to the device you’re currently reading this on. These were once just a spark in someones imagination. But how does these ideas come about? What does it take for someone to someone to hit upon that one great idea that changes everything.

Necessity is the mother of inventions, right? Well, not always.

Steven Johnson shows us that necessity is not always the mother of invention. Sometimes its just people having fun and creating something just for the hell of it. When people are having fun and being creative great things can happen.

Johnson is one of the leading minds on science and innovation. He even has his own show on PBS called How we got to now and has written a number of books including The Invention of Air and The Ghost Map. This is a great talk for anyone wanting to become inspired and try and find that one great idea.

 

Kick start your adventures: win our unique coffee blend!

There’s nothing like a freshly ground, steaming cup of coffee to jumpstart your day. From the distinct taste of a mocha to the wafting aroma from a strong espresso, coffee is the perfect pick me up. It’s guaranteed to get you motivated and ready to take on anything!

That’s why we’ve teamed up with independent coffee company Tugboat Brews to create a unique blend, just for all you intrepid Doers! Appropriately named ‘Rocket Fuel’, the intense dark brew is perfect to get you moving and help achieve your goals!

 

Why coffee is good for you..and your adventures!

It’s been proven that caffeine, when it enters your bloodstream, acts like fuel. It increases your adrenalin levels and not only increases your physical performance, but significantly boosts your morale and mood. It can even improve reaction times and short term brain functions, according to a paper by Nutritionist Dr Carrie Ruxton.  

Harvard Scientist Dr Frank Hu, who spent 20 years studying the effects of caffeine on the human body, also discovered that coffee drinkers live longer. You’re at less risk of cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinsons, plus a decreased risk of diabetes and liver cancer. This means more time to create and achieve all those cool life goals!

 

Win your own motivational brew!

We’re so excited about our new blend, and helping you to kick start your adventures, that we’re launching a competition. We’re giving away 20, 200g packs of Rocket Fuel, and 20, 100g packs, absolutely free!

And for all you coffee on-the-go Doers, we’ve also got a couple of reusable cups to giveaway thanks to Stojo. Their collapsible, easy to carry cups are made from recyclable materials and are environmentally friendly. So you get to save the planet from all that unnecessary plastic, and take Rocket Fuel with you on all your adventures!

 

 

To get your hands on this unique brew, either

  • Retweet this post on Twitter

  • Share the competition post on Facebook

  • Repost it on Instagram

  • Join our website and create your goals!

 

Don’t forget to use the hashtag #GoDoItRocketFuel when sharing on social media!

 

 

Ted Talk Tuesday – What reality are you creating for yourself?

Reality what is it really? Does everyone perceive the same planet as you do or is it just a story we tell ourselves based on our experiences? Isaac Lidsky tells us that it’s something we create in our own mind each and everyday. With this idea in mind he says that we can change how we can the world by changing our opinions toward it. This can lead to a totally different way to live our lives.

 

Reality isn’t something you perceive; it’s something you create in your mind.

 

 

Ted Talk Tuesday – To raise brave girls, encourage adventure

How does someone become brave? There’s only one way we know and that’s to get into situations where you feel a little scared. A little fear is a great thing. It can get you to take that leap or run just that little bit faster.

Caroline Paul thinks that the best education you can give a child is to get outdoors and go do some stuff. I have to say we tend to agree! Adventure builds character getting outdoors is good for soul. The two really go hand in hand.

Gutsy girls skateboard, climb trees, clamber around, fall down, scrape their knees, get right back up — and grow up to be brave women.

Caroline is a definitely a brave woman! In her resume she has firefighter, paraglider and all-around adventurer. Which is pretty impressive to say the least! Her talk out lines the core ideas behind her book The Gutsy Girl. Maybe it will inspire you to raise you kids a little bit differently!

 

 

 

OW vs WOW – How the way you think affects your success

Why is it that some people seem to have all the luck? You know the type of person, where opportunities fall at their feet and things always go their way. And then there’s the people who just seem to get the worst luck, even if they’re really trying. Well, if you’ve also been pondering this phenomenon, you’ll be pleased to hear that we recently stumbled upon a theory that explains why some people have all the success and why some others don’t, even if they’ve had the same resources and opportunities.

(And when we’re talking about success here, we don’t mean in the “traditional” sense of being rich and powerful, we mean  success as in happiness that comes from achieving your dreams and goals, whatever shape they may take.)

 

Are you an OW brainer, or a WOW brainer?

According to Todd Herman, of the Peak Athlete, there are two types of mindset when it comes to success – OW and WOW –  and whichever one is dominant, will determine whether you are likely to be successful or not.

Now Todd know’s what he’s talking about. He’s been training professional athletes and entrepreneurs to create winning mindsets and improve their mental toughness for over 16 years.

OW brainers see things as hard. In the future, they see obstacles, struggle and pain. When they want to make a change, they think of all the ways something will hurt them instead of the positives that will come out of it. People with an OW mentality tend to be bored, stuck and very firmly rooted in their comfort zone. They’re a glass half empty kinda person.

So, if you were learning to ride a bike, and you tend towards an OW mindset, you’d probably be worried about falling off, getting hurt and making a fool of yourself. Maybe even to the extent that you wouldn’t even try.

Contrast that with WOW brainers, who are literally in awe of what’s going on around them. They see challenges as adventures and every hurdle or failure as a learning opportunity. They’re usually pretty confident people and definitely see the glass as half full.
If someone with a WOW mindset was learning to ride a bike, they would be really excited to get going. They’d see each fall or crash as something to learn from. And even when the stabilisers come off and they’re really wobbly, they remember that when they started, they couldn’t ride a bike at all.

 

Can you guess which one is more likely to succeed?

 

Now don’t panic if you feel like you’re leaning towards being a OW brainer – you aren’t exclusively one or the other, and you might be more inclined to be a certain way depending on the situation. Plus, your mindset isn’t fixed, you can totally shift it to make the likelihood of you achieving what you want go through the roof!

 

And the even better news? Go-do.it is perfectly set up to help you do that.

You see, my intrepid doer, some of the ways you can move towards a WOW brain have literally been baked in to the go-do.it way.
How? I hear you ask. Well…

 

1 – It gives you goals and a path to achieve them.

If you don’t know where you’re going, how do you expect to get there? You need a plan, with actionable steps, or you’re going to get overwhelmed and stay firmly in the OW camp.

 

It’s a well-touted fact that writing down or having a record of your goals makes you much more likely to achieve them. Even though the original 1953 Yale study was proven to be a myth, a 2012 study in California proved that by writing down your goals, you are more likely to achieve them.
So, simply by creating your goals on go-do.it, you’ll get yourself much further along the road than if you simply keep them in your head.

 

2 – It gives you accountability

The same study, found that if you then share your goals with a friend, you’re almost twice as likely to achieve them. And if you report back to your friends on your progress, that gives you another extra boost!
Fortunately sharing is an integral part of go-do.it. It’s really easy to hit share on your goals and tell your friends what you’re planning to do.

 

3 – You can see just how far you’ve come and celebrate success.

One of the most important parts of a WOW brain is that you recognise all of the hard work and achievement that’s got you to where you are now. And go-do.it means you’ll always be able to see just how many cool things you’ve achieved (and brag about it to your friends too!)

 

When work is busy, or you feel like you haven’t learnt anything new in forever, or you’re feeling a bit stuck or bored, it’s really easy to forget or underplay just how far you’ve come. Achievements fade in our memories over time which means your motivation can go south. Having a record of everything you’ve achieved so far can be the push you need to keep going.
And as an added bonus, it also reminds you to be thankful for all of your journey so far. And gratitude doesn’t just help you achieve your goals, it can dramatically improve both your mental and physical health.

 

Learn more about OW and WOW mindsets.

If you want to dig deeper into the theory, watch this fantastic interview with Todd and Marie Forleo. They look at the science behind what happens in your brain and your body when you’re forming new habits and give you five ways to help move from an OW to a WOW mindset.
You can also read more about how your mindset shapes your life on Brainpickings.

 

What’s next?

Whichever way you lean, go-do.it will help you on your journey. We’ll be your own personal cheerleader to help you make goals, create a plan, connect with other people doing cool stuff and show you just how far you’ve come.

 

So, if you’re an OW brainer, join us and we’ll help you literally go from OW to WOW!

 

And if you’re already leaning towards a WOW mentality, sign up, share your adventures with the world and help keep your momentum going!
What are you waiting for – join us today!

 

 

Ted Talk Tuesday – What I learned from 100 days of rejection

Rejection. Its the sort of thing that most people try and avoid. Whether its something big or small it always hurts. But is there something we can learn from it? They do say whatever doesn’t kill you, only makes you stronger.

Jia Jiang is a man who has experienced more rejection than most of us. Instead of shrinking away from it he actively sought it out and created an interesting experiment. Could he find situations where he could be turned down for 100 days. Thats a bold undertaking. Not only would he have create the situation but also make sure that he would be refused. The goal was never to succeed, quite the opposite. The only way this experiment would work is if he was rejected, rejected and they rejected again for 100 days!

Jiang desensitized himself to the pain and shame that rejection often brings

 

From asking to lend money to free food he finds many ways to get rejected. This is a great talk for anybody who is afraid to not get what they want! It shows us that sometimes rejection is not the worst thing in the world!