Ok, I have to be honest. I don’t love New Year Resolutions. I spent years trying to think of a goal that was really important to me. Something that was somewhat attainable, and something that would keep me motivated.

Year after year, I would fail miserably. If I made it to March it was a miracle. Finally, I just accepted the fact that I wasn’t a goal-setter, and stopped making resolutions forever.

Since then, I’ve realized that making and reaching goals is the best way to move forward and avoid staying stagnant for too long. I spent quite a bit of time reading about setting reasonable goals and how to make and set goals that you can actually keep. Here’s a few things that I’ve learned that definitely me keep my goals now. 

Start with core values. This was a huge eye-opener to me. I always focus on the end result. I tend to think about what I want to have or achieve and work backward from there. Instead, experts advise to start with core values, beliefs, passions, and what is truly important.

Next, make a goal that is SMART. SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. These criteria were first established in the 80s by a professor at DePaul University and are now used by millions. These criteria make a goal more than just a wish or a hope. I think my problem is my goals are often not attainable or realistic. I tend to create goals with no real plan of how to implement them into my life other than by using sheer willpower. Real goals need to have a plan.goals-1

When you have made a goal write. it. down. I will probably need to write it down more than once, probably several times to keep reminding myself of what my goal actually is. Once you write it down, continue to refer back to it and find small ways every week or every day to get one step closer to your goal. Spread the word too. Tell your friends and family about your goal so they can follow up with you to see if you’ve been sticking to it.  You can share your successful updates with them.  

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With a few of these tips I know that this year will definitely be different. Starting with core values, and deciding on a goal that is SMART with actionable steps and writing it down is the best way to make New Years Resolutions more realistic than they have been in the past. Who’s ready to get started?!

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http://visual.ly/setting-smart-goals