There's just something about that moment when the minute and hour hands overlap at the top of the clock; 11:59pm on December 31st (not so) silently clicks over to 12:00am on January 1st, and what's the first thing most of us think about?
NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS.
This year is the Year of ME! I'm REALLY going to do it this time!
We've all been there, all revved up and ready to go. But the truth is, about 35% of us don't even make it to the end of January, and by the end of the year, only about 8% of people who made a resolution see it through to completion.
Whatever your goal (because let's face it, "resolution" is just a fancy word for "goal"), follow these tried and true tips for achieving it:
- "I'm going to get healthy" is too vague of a statement; what specifically do you need to do to get healthy? Lose weight? Exercise more? Stop smoking? Use laser focus to determine exactly what you want to do.
- Whatever your goal is, you need a way of determining whether you're making progress. So instead of "I'm going to cut back on drinking", say "I'm going to limit myself to two drinks a week" - a definite number is much easier to keep track of.
- "I'm going to go to the gym every single day this year." That is a great goal to have - but is it really realistic? What if you or someone you love gets sick? What if you have to unexpectedly work four hours late, right through your workout time? Sometimes, Life gets in the way - and an attainable goal will account for that.
- Yes - the goal of knitting 50 sweaters out of an Angora rabbit's fur in a week is Specific, Measurable, and (if you don't sleep or eat and employ the help of several people) Attainable, but considering that you're a high-powered lawyer who has never knit a day in her life and doesn't even have an Angora rabbit, is it really relevant? Your goal has to apply to your life - to your big picture - if it has any chance of seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.
- Achievable goals have time frames. For example, having a goal of losing twenty pounds in six months is much more likely to stop you from grabbing that second donut than a vague, deadline-free goal of losing twenty pounds...whenever.
Try out the SMART method with your current goals - do they fit the bill? Do they need a little tweaking? Set yourself up for success in 2014!