We all have high aspirations when it comes to the New Year. Suddenly Netflix people think they’ll convert to bookworms, dessert junkies are convinced they can sustain Whole 30, and the oblivious are sure they’ll be tuned into the news this year. If you don’t believe me, walk into any YMCA on January 1st and tell me what you see (to be honest, the Y is probably closed for the holiday but you get the point).
So how do we make goals that we can actually achieve instead of just reaching for the stars and landing somewhere not too far from where we started? We’ll break it down with a few easy steps.
Cut them down
In the past, you had a list of 10 resolutions. Maybe you checked off one, or two. Instead of disappointing yourself with that poor ratio, simply set fewer goals. You’re much more likely to complete 1 to 2 goals if you focus your energy on them. So pick what’s really important to you and stick with it.
Write them down
It sounds silly but putting pen to paper makes your goals come to life. When you see them written on the page, they transform from mere thoughts to concrete resolutions. Give them a space to live to hold yourself accountable.
Make them measurable
Sure, it’s easy to use that ambiguous word “more” in your resolutions (read “more”, go to Church “more”, eat “more” vegetables) but what does that really mean? And how do you know if you’ve achieved it? If you tell yourself that you’ll eat three vegetables per day, then at the end of each day you can assess your success.
Assess often and re-evaluate
When you have measurable goals (read two books this month!), you can observe whether or not you completed them. If you notice that you are constantly falling short, you have two options 1. Modify your behavior to be more successful (spend more time reading, choose shorter books), or 2. Modify your goals. In all likelihood, the resolutions that you make in the New Year are simply to make you a better you. If you need to modify them to make them more achievable, that’s okay. Good for you for recognizing it.
Ultimately, goal setting is a strategy to help with productivity. So, spend some time making manageable goals based on the outcomes you wish to achieve. Oh, and happy New Year. May 2020 be a fulfilling, delightful year for you and yours.