Nearly half of the people making resolutions will give up by July, according to recent studies. Only ten percent make it the full year. There’s a way to fight those odds.
Often times, people set vague goals that are difficult to address, or that contain unrealistic expectations that are nearly impossible to meet. It’s important that you choose resolutions that you feel are within your reach in the year ahead. Use the SMART goal-setting method.
Make sure your goals are:
- Specific: Clarify your outcome.
- Measurable: Create objectives that can be charted.
- Actionable: Start with an action verb.
- Realistic: Ensure it aligns with your life.
- Time-bound: Give your goals a deadline.
By taking time to ensure that your goals fit the SMART criteria, you greatly improve your chances for success. Here are three examples:
1. “Drop two inches from my waist by Christmas 2011 through diet and exercise.”
(Has realistic and measurable qualities)
2. “Improve my golf score 10 strokes, by August, by practicing my short game.”
(Very specific, it tells me how I’m going to do it)
3. “Land six job interviews in the HR field by end of March.”
(Realistic and has a strong time-bound element)
Put it in Writing
In writing down your goals, you are creating a state of personal investment. Make a point to keep your goals readily within reach:
- Place them in the front of your planner
- Keep them on a note card in your wallet
- Tape them to your bathroom mirror
- Put a sticky note on your computer monitor
- Make “Goals” a contact in your mobile phone
Your New Years Resolutions can play a major role in the success you’ll have in the year ahead. It just takes a little planning. If you haven’t yet purchased your planner for 2011, do so now. It’s a small investment into a big future for you and your goals.