- How to Create a New Years Goal that Works
- First Part
- How many years have you completely failed with your New Year’s resolution, forgot about it entirely, or felt incredibly guilty? That is no way to start out a New Year. You should start your 2023 feeling empowered, excited, and fresh.
- New Year’s resolutions have never really worked for me. I like to jump from thing to thing and flow with what makes me feel good. I set goals all throughout the year, so why should January 1st feel any better? Well, in his book Atomic Habits, James Clear explains that we’re more likely to start a new habit on the 1st of the month or a Monday as it feels like a fresh start. Towards the end of the week or month, we tend to drop off and the process starts all over again. So my assumption is that January 1st feels like the ultimate “start date.”
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- Second Part
- I like to approach New Years resolutions in December. There is nothing I hate more than starting my Monday confused about what I need to be doing, so on Friday I take ten minutes to outline my Monday and I do that every evening for each consecutive day. For New Years, I like to go into the year already feeling like my best self, so usually in that quiet period between Christmas and New Years that feels like no-mans-land, I take a little time to outline goals for the first quarter of the year.
- Now it’s a little different for me because I already do my self-employment taxes by January 15th, so my quarters look a little different, so if that’s your case, feel free to plan with those quarters. But for my personal goals, I like to break the year into January – end of March, April – end of June, July – end of September, and October – end of December. I usually take some time right before the start of each of these quarters to outline quarterly and monthly goals, and spend a little extra time for January to look at yearly and longer futuristic goals.
- The key to a good goal is putting it in your calendar and checking in with yourself. I break down each goal into actionable steps that I then put in my calendar. At the end of each month I have a check in to determine if I was successful or what I still need to work on, and set actionable steps for the next month. The other thing is to keep trying. Just because you couldn’t make it to the gym four days last week doesn’t mean you don’t go four days this week. That’s a lack mentality. Why should one missed day derail your entire plan. Start fresh next week.
- A lot of goals fail because they’re too general. “Feel healthier,” or, “Read 12 books,” even is too general. Which books are you going to read, how long do you need to read them, and then put that daily amount into your calendar. Schedule pick up from the library. Order online. Download the audio book. As you can imagine, this takes some time and planning, which is why I like to block off a day to just go through all my goals.
- What is a goal you want to achieve? How can you break that down? Now break it down even further. Put those steps into your calendar. Schedule a monthly check in with yourself where you take an hour to have a glass of wine, light a candle, and judgement-free figure out where you are. If you’re behind, just strategize to get back on track. You’re stronger than you think you are. Find an accountability buddy and schedule your monthly check ins with them.
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