Goals vs. Resolutions
New Years Eve is right around the corner. Are you ready for 2019?
January 1st would not be complete without everyone talking about resolutions. You may be someone who gets excited by resolutions–looking at the new year as a clean slate you can’t wait to harness. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you may refuse to make resolutions simply because you don’t need that stress in your life.
Resolutions aren’t necessarily a bad thing but they often don’t have a clear path in order to achieve them. For example, “I want to lose weight in 2019”. How are you going to lose weight? How much weight do you want to lose? It is best to incorporate both goals AND resolutions in your goal setting sessions. Goals give you specific, attainable milestones while resolutions can help to keep you motivated and reinforce those lifelong changes.
For the sake of keeping this post short and sweet we will focus specifically on goal setting.
Use the following tips as a guide to set your goals and as a result set yourself up for success in 2019.
1. Do it now.
Goals can’t be met if you never make any! Go grab a piece of paper right now and reflect on your year. What did you do in 2018? What did you plan to do but didn’t end up achieving? Take some time to think of the main things you want to do in 2019 and write them down. Make sure each goal is specific and measurable. You need to be able to have a time frame and specific measures so you can accurately track your progress.
Example: “I will lose 8 pounds by April 1st 2019.” not — “I want to lose weight in 2019.”
When you’re setting goals it is important to write them using “I will” rather than “I want to” or “I hope to”. This language promotes action and allows you to really believe you will achieve this goal.
2. Keep it simple.
Now that you have some goals written down, really look at what you’re signing yourself up for. You have your entire life to change your habits, there is no need to rush into anything. If you feel your goals might be a bit too ambitious, work backwards. For example, let’s say your goal is “I will only eat whole foods in 2019” but your diet is comprised of take out and packaged foods right now, that might not be the best goal for you right now. It might be a better idea to slowly start eating more whole foods and less packaged foods over time.
This is where segmented goals come in. Segmented goals are larger goals that have been broken down into smaller, less daunting goals. Let’s use our weight loss example again. If your goal is to lose 8 pounds by April you can break that down into smaller 2 or 3 pound check in points between January and April. Segmented goals don’t only work for weight loss, it can work for financial goals very well and pretty much anything else!
3. Enroll others.
Use the people around you for support. If you have your goals set but don’t tell anyone it is harder to keep yourself accountable when you’re falling off track. Tell your family, tell your friends, enroll the people around you in your goals so they can help you when you’re struggling. Be vocal about the steps you’re taking to change your life.
4. Be ok with failure, it’s not permanent.
We’re all human and we make mistakes. Just because you fall off the wagon en route to your goal does not mean that you’re a failure. You might have made a mistake, but that does not define you. Go into 2019 with the mindset that there will be times when you fail but where you will succeed depends on what you do after you fail. It is not a simple task to achieve a goal, it will take hard work but is so satisfying in the end.
What are you waiting for? Go crush those goals!