Ready to make your New Year’s resolutions?
Perhaps more than any other year, 2020 has challenged us to reframe our priorities and what matters most in life. For many of us, the experiences of the past year have opened the door for new opportunities, goals, and big dreams for the future.
With 2021 just a few days away, now is the perfect time to reconsider the lessons you’ve learned this year and focus on your big plans for the next. But, not all resolutions are created equally – or created in a way that guides you to success.
Let’s learn some of the top tips for creating New Year’s Resolutions that stick!
Be specific about your goal.
For the best results, create a goal that is as specific as possible. “Lose weight” or “drink more water” are too vague to make any traction or to gauge your success. Instead, try SMART goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. For instance, “I will lose 15 pounds by July 2021 by exercising 4 times per week and switching to an anti-inflammatory diet.”
Choose one or two big goals.
You may have several big goals for the next year, but focusing on too many things can spread your energy (and motivation) too thin. Instead, choose one or two main goals to focus on for the year, or at least the first 3 months of the year. Once those goals become habits and reality, you can move on to the next goals on your list.
Make a plan.
Resolutions are just hopes without a solid plan. To reach your goals this year, make sure you plan ahead and give yourself an easy-to-follow framework for how you will achieve your goal. What are the steps to get there? What can you do today to start? How will you track your progress? Planning takes a little time but keeps you on track for months to come.
Have a mess-up plan.
It’s normal to feel like giving up when you fall off track. But remember: one mess-up does not mean you have failed. Put a plan into place for when things don’t go according to plan. For example, if you miss a day of exercise, establish a plan ahead of time for how you will make up for it the following day or week. Then, you’ll know exactly how to get back on track instead of giving up.
Start with tiny steps.
When we focus too much on the big picture, overwhelm is inevitable. Even the biggest goals have tiny actionable steps along the way. If you’re stuck on a big picture goal, list out the smaller steps that will get you there. Then, the smaller steps for each of those steps. Find the smallest actionable step to help get you started.
Get perspective and celebrate small wins.
No matter what your goal is, any amount of progress along the way should be celebrated! Reaching a goal is never a linear process. Any amount of progress can be considered a step in the right direction, even if you feel far away from your bigger goal. When you notice a change, shift, or have a small win, celebrate! This boosts your motivation and keeps you on track.
A Goal-Oriented 2021
So, what are your goals this year? How do you hope to feel in 2022? Now is the time to dream about the future and make your plan. And remember to have fun along the way! Happy planning, and happy new year!