Purposeful Goals


Power of baby steps
Hi, I'm Ally!

I'm an executive coach, speaker, trainer, and mindset shifter.
And I'm committed to making a positive impact in this world.


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So, a wonderful thing happened last month. I thought I’d share.  

Let’s start with a bit of background. I have four boys, and as with any family, some are more “sporty” than others. Our second, well he’s our “cerebral” one. After a few attempts at playing sports that failed to excite him, he decided to give tennis a go. And right out of the gate, he enjoyed it.  

After about six months of playing recreationally, he got wind that eighth graders were allowed to try out for the Junior Varsity team. Even better? EVERYONE MADE IT. With a small caveat: Everyone made it ONLY IF they passed the New York State physical fitness test. “Amazing!” I shared with him. But he saw my enthusiasm quickly fade as we reviewed the “passing” fitness requirements of a 13-year-old male in NYS. Ummm… this isn’t gonna be pretty.

setting direction and creating a plan

Catching his disappointment when he glanced at the numbers, I shouted “we got this buddy”! But I’ll be honest with you. I didn’t think we had this. I knew he struggled with push-ups, sit ups, and many of the other things that he would be tested on. BUT, I also knew how much he wanted this.   So together, we created a plan.  

At the very start of February, we took some baselines. Ten-push ups. (53 required). 15 Sit ups. (35 required). I think you get the picture. We estimated about 40 days until testing. And we came up with a plan. A printed plan, to be executed by him, two times a day, and recorded. Right up until testing day.  

the power of momentum

The first few days were rough as we both were feeling that we weren’t getting anywhere. I tried to stay positive. But it really wasn’t that hard. Mainly, because his shear discipline and motivation was something that I NEVER saw in this child. And then, the magic started to happen.   The needle began to move, first making slow progress, then the occasional step backward after a long day, but then a consistent positive trajectory. We were on our way.  

About three weeks into this activity, I said to him… “You know what’s so amazing here? You see how much control you have over this. You can see from these charts how putting in the work, day after day, is affecting these numbers.” I also shared that even if we didn’t get to where we needed to be by the day of, he’s learned an INVALUABLE lesson. You have the ability to move the needle. You just need a plan, and to do the work. And even if we have to begin training earlier in the season next year, you know you have the power to do this.

the overflow effect

This biggest change I saw in him was the HUGE boost in confidence. Socially, athletically, and academically. I saw how empowered he became when he realized that HE was steering the ship. He had more control of the situation than he thought, affecting his mood, his motivation, and his overall joie de vivre.

In my workshops, I am always stressing the importance of clarifying your direction, and setting even the smallest of goals to help you inch towards that goal. When we set an intention and then actually deliver on it? Well we’ve kept a promise to ourselves. The burst of dopamine (the reward chemical) that comes with that keeps us motivated and moving forward. It also reminds us that we have SO MUCH more control over our lives that we think we do, which is critical in today’s chaotic world.   But a child learning this lesson that I teach to adults weekly? A teen seeing value in a growth mindset… where they know that there is always opportunity to improve? It’s absolutely invaluable. And in my humble opinion, MUCH more important than any algebraic equation.

The next time you encounter a challenge that seems nearly impossible, think of Isaac’s story. Ask yourself…”What is one small step I can take to get there?” But please don’t just stop there. Prove to yourself that YOU, TOO, can move the needle.  

And in case you’re wondering. Yes, he’s now playing Junior Varsity tennis for the school team. But even more important than that, another parent pulled me aside a few weeks back and said they’ve “never seen him happier”.  Amazing what happens when you just take that baby step.

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Hi, I'm Ally.
Executive coach,
speaker, trainer and mindset shifter

Observing the declining state of mental health in a world of non-stop news, work-life overlap and distractions galore, Ally became committed to learning and sharing simple strategies, based on the research in the field of Positive Psychology, to help individuals and teams thrive.

Learn more

Ally Meyers is a certified executive coach  and speaker with workshops that translate the science of happiness into strategies to manage stress and increase resilience, productivity and well-being.


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