Have you accomplished the New Year’s resolutions you set last year? No. Don’t feel alone. The University of Scranton research suggests that just 8% of people achieve their New Year’s goals. How can you move yourself into the achiever’s block? This is the first post in a Goal Achievers Series to help you do just that.
Why people don’t achieve their goals/resolutions.
There are many reasons that people don’t achieve their New Year’s resolutions. People make grandiose resolutions to sound good in front of their friends. Setting overly ambitious and restrictive goals is another reason people don’t stick with their resolutions. You might initially feel inspired and energized by setting large goals, but the luster of these resolutions fades quickly when we realize how difficult they are to keep. Small, incremental lifestyle changes have a much greater chance of creating real change. Read on to remake your current resolutions into achievable goals.
Many people are excellent at setting goals but fail to prepare a written plan for achieving them. The Goal Achievers Series is meant to help you not only set realistic goals but actually achieve them. New posts will be released each Friday during January. Let’s make this year the year you achieve your goals and more.
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Step 1 – Write down your goals.
The first step in an achievable goal is writing your goal down. Use the SMART goal system to make sure that a goal is stated in a way to make accomplishing it more doable. SMART goals are:
Specific – Clearly define your goal; answer what, why, and how. Don’t say “I’m going to lose weight” but rather, “I’m going to lose 20 pounds”.
Measurable – Make sure your goal contains concrete criteria for measuring your progress. The same example as specific works here, with “I’m going to lose weight” how do you know how close you are to achieving your goal. Or worse yet, once you’ve lost 1 pound you can quit because you accomplished your goal. I doubt that was what you were thinking when you made the goal.
Attainable – Your goal should be challenging yet realistic. You should be capable of reaching the goal and have the resources you need to reach it. When talking about New Year’s resolutions, it’s not attainable to lose 200 pounds this year, but it is attainable to lose 50-100 pounds this year.
Relevant – Is the goal important to you? Many times, goals that aren’t thought out really aren’t that important to us. We either stated them because we thought that was what someone else wanted to hear or to blend in with a group. If a goal isn’t relevant to you, it won’t hold your attention and therefore you won’t achieve it.
Time-bound – Specify the time frame for accomplishing your goal. While “I’m going to lose 20 pounds” could easily meet all of the other criteria, but it doesn’t have a time component, so you don’t know when to measure your success. By setting a “by date” you put urgency on your goal. It’s no longer whenever I get to it, it is now.
Let’s achieve our resolutions together.
Take some time this week to write down your goals using the SMART system.
Other posts that might help you with reaching your goals:
Let me know what SMART goals you’ve written down in the comments below. Having someone to share your progress with can make all the difference in achieving or not achieving your goals. I’d love to be your accountability partner.