It’s that time of year where everyone is talking goals. The new year for most folks is when setting goals really kicks into high gear. The whole “new year, new me” thing is in full effect. And while the beginning of the year is an arbitrary time, it does serve as a good touchpoint for planning out what you want to accomplish in the year ahead. But while most people know that they should be setting goals, they really don’t know how to set goals that are realistic and achievable. Here’s a fun fact – 25% of resolutions are broken in the first week of the new year, and 80% drop them within the first eight weeks. But I don’t want that to be you! Let’s talk about how to make sure you’re setting yourself up for success when it comes to setting goals in the new year.
Write Down Your Goals
Scientifically, you’re more likely to achieve your goals if you’re writing them down. I personally use Mind Maps to write down my goals and put them up on my board so I can see them daily. Writing down goals makes them real. It’s easy to change our minds about what our goals should be if we are only holding them in our heads. By having something we can visually reflect on, we’re more likely to actively work towards those goals.
Set Short-Term Milestones
It’s easy to push off and forget about things that have far-off due dates. You’re more likely to forget about them or procrastinate until you don’t have adequate time to work on them. Some of what you want to achieve may seem pretty lofty so it can make sense to have a long-term due date. For example, maybe you have a goal to write a course by the end of the year. Instead of looking at the goal as a whole, break it down into shorter-term milestones that you can work towards, like recording three modules by the end of March.
Specificity is key to achieving your goals. The more specific you are, the more motivated you’ll be in achieving your goal. Vague goals can lead to discouragement because you may not feel like you’re getting closer when there’s not a clear end in sight. Use specific, tangible words in your goals such as measurements and if possible, a date by which they will be accomplished. Want to make more money? What does that look like? Maybe you’ll book 3 clients each month at $1,000 a client. Be specific with what you are trying to achieve.
Focus on 1-2 Goals at a Time
I’m a big advocate of focusing on only 1-2 goals at a time. Any more than that, and you’re more likely to achieve nothing on any one goal. As you start to accomplish each goal, you can turn your focus to a new one. This will make you more likely to achieve more.
Schedule Time for Working on Your Goals
If you’re not making time to work on your goals, they aren’t going to get done. Period. We have to actively set aside time to put work into what we are trying to achieve. Find a time in your day (and put it in your planner) that you can work on moving a goal forward. For example, if you want to post more consistently on social media, schedule time to work on your content calendar and create and schedule content.
Set Goals that You Actually Want to Achieve
In business, a lot of us are following trends and feel like we have to keep up with what everyone else is doing. But just because one business posts every day on YouTube doesn’t mean that you need to have YouTube as a goal for your business. Really think about what makes sense for the type of business and lifestyle you want. If YouTube isn’t your thing, don’t focus on it. Do what makes sense for you.