January is a busy month for commitment-makers. Every year, people ponder what they’ll accomplish in the year to come, and many make new year’s resolutions, hoping this will be the year they finally accomplish some long-held dream.
But as January fizzles out, so do most resolutions. By the time Valentine’s Day comes around, most people have put their goals on the back burner. The ones who haven’t will join the ranks of the resolution giver-uppers by the end of March.
A very few people might continue to work on their goals year-round, but chances are, the majority won’t. There’s a very simple reason for that: most people state a goal, but don’t come up with a strategy to accomplish it.
How about you? How are you doing with your New Year’s Resolutions? How much have you worked toward meeting your goals? If you need an extra boost to get started on the goals you set on January 1st, here are some tips.
Firstly, make sure your goal is SMART. We’ve all heard it by now: if goals aren’t specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound, they’re usually not specific enough to be meaningful.
Don’t just come up with generic goals; make sure you know exactly what you want to accomplish (using numbers if possible), and when you want to accomplish it by. Then make sure you have some way of keeping yourself accountable with a date and a way to measure your accomplishments. And make sure the goal you’re setting is important and relevant to you—really examine your goal-based decisions to see if you’re choosing goals based on what you want and value, rather than what you think others want to see.
And after you’ve done all that, make sure there are milestones along the road to goal accomplishment. Set process goals that you can attain and celebrate, and that will get you closer to the main goal. For more in-depth information on how to set goals you’ll actually accomplish, see this post.