Remember when you set your New Year’s resolutions and your goals? How’s that coming along now? Did you follow a game plan? While we may start off the year ready to accomplish our heartfelt resolutions with our goal setting, it’s not too late to get back on track and follow through.
Here are 5 tips to increase your chances of succeeding with your goals this year:
1. Write it down
If you haven’t done this already, do it. Believe it or not, many people make ambitious verbal commitments for what they wish to accomplish but they don’t write it down. Writing down a goal is a powerful tool that helps embed your commitment in your mind. Take the time out to write down your goal. Post your goal where you will see it frequently every day. The bathroom mirror, your dashboard or your cell phone are great places to post your goal.
After writing down you initial goal, you need to:
2. Break it down into steps.
It’s easy to set a general goal. For instance, “I will live a healthier lifestyle this year,” is a popular general goal. However, each goal needs steps that specify what you will do to accomplish it. So, in addition to writing down the main goal, write down the steps you will take to become a successful goal-worthy wonder.
Be detailed. The more specific you get with your steps, the better your mind will be directed to accomplishing these things.
As for the example above, perhaps you could write:
Goal: “I will live a healthier lifestyle this year.”
- Step 1. Walk for 1/2 hour a day/5 days a week. (After work)
- Step 2. Eat 5-7 servings of fruit and vegetables every day. (During meals and for my snacks.)
- Step 3. Drink 8 glasses of water every day. (During meals and with snacks)
After writing down the steps towards your goal, you will want to…
3. Schedule the time when you will work on the goal:
Your daily to-do list is a great place to remind you of the small steps that you need to take towards your goals. Some phone apps will allow you to automatically schedule in your evening walk or your mid-morning fruit snack. If your to-do list doesn’t allow this, then manually writing these steps into your daily schedule is also good. Daily scheduling helps you to be consistent and persistent in your goal pursuit.
After working on your goal for a while, you will need to:
4. Schedule a progress check:
Calendar a time when you will reassess progress on your goal. This could be done on a weekly, a bi-weekly or a monthly schedule.
When reassessing, you may ask yourself:
- “How am I doing?”
- “How can I improve?”
- “Is there anything that I need to change?”
(For example: Perhaps choosing to go walking after work did not work out. Maybe you could wake up a bit earlier in the morning and go walking then?)
Lastly, when writing your goals, remember:
5. Don’t overwhelm yourself with too many goals:
Honestly? It’s much better to focus on a few things and do them really well as opposed to focusing on a gazillion things and never accomplishing any of it. Then again…if there are a gazillion things on your plate, it is impossible to focus on anything. So, choose a few of the most important goals you have to focus on….then go for it!
While most people started off the year with hopes of accomplishment, many may have gotten off track. With proper goal setting, planning and follow through, the rest of the year can be whole lot brighter.
Have a happy day!
The Happy Balance Girl
Copyright 2012 by Stacey Shimabukuro-Lui. All rights reserved.