The first week of January is that reoccurring e time of year when we feel that we should turn over a new leaf and have a fresh start. Unfortunately, most people don’t have much luck keeping their New Year’s Resolutions, at least not more than a month or two …and there are several reasons for that. A year is a long time to commit to something, especially something that’s most likely difficult; motivation is strong at the beginning of a new plan, but diminishes over time; often the resolutions we set are something big that we haven’t attempted before. Add in that we are coming out of a party and vacation season, and it can be overwhelming to maintain new habits.
Here are six steps to make sure your resolutions really stick this year.
- Begin With Why. Why am I setting this goal? Why does it matter? Goals require you to change your routine and step away from your comfort zone. In order to do that, you have to truly want that goal. The goals that matter most are based on the ideas, people, beliefs, and interests that matter most to you – your governing values. When you focus on this, you’ll find the ongoing desire and motivation to keep at them.
- State The Goal What And When. Write your long-range goal and set a date to complete it. Make sure you have a very specific time frame of when you plan to accomplish your goal and what success will look like for you.
- How Will You Reach The Goal? Break your goal into small, achievable steps and set deadlines for completing each step. The key is to treat each step as a separate goal with its own timeline. Share your goals with others so they can support your efforts.
- Make It Happen. Once you’ve set your goal and have your steps worked out, schedule each step into your weekly and daily plans. Set deadlines for completing each step—which will give you a sense of urgency and spur you forward. Put them on your calendar. It’s amazing what you will accomplish with determination and a workable plan.
- Prioritize Your Tasks. As you plan each day, be sure to give top priority to the tasks related to your goals so you can be sure to work on putting first things first. If you stick to this formula, you’re sure to find more success in your endeavors.
- Assess Your Progress. Whenever you reach a scheduled milestone along the way to your larger goal, take a few minutes to assess your progress. Did you complete your step on time? If so, what went well and what could you do better next time? If you haven’t yet completed the step, can you name the reasons why? What will you do differently? Most importantly, what is the new deadline date? How will you adjust your goal so you can keep moving forward?
This year defy the statistics and accomplish your New Year’s resolutions!