Happy New Year! You’ve officially made it to 2018. Did you make any resolutions when the clock struck twelve on January 1st? New Year’s resolutions have a bad reputation — they’re made with good intentions and forgotten before February 1st. That doesn’t have to be the case. By following these simple tips, you can look back once 2018 is done and say that you truly accomplished your goals.
1. Realize that goals matter.
Human beings aren’t made to look at the long-term, or at the bigger picture — we’re programmed to focus on now — immediate wants and immediate needs. It’s very easy to push goals aside and tell yourself they don’t matter. There’s a lot of good that comes with living in the moment, especially if you do it mindfully; however, without goals, you’re going to stagnate.
Do you want to be the same person you are today in ten years? Do you want to have the same habits, the same career, the same relationships? If your answer is “yes,” you’re either in a very good place, or you’re lying. And really, if you’re not working to be better, you’ll probably end up being worse.
2. Set the right goal.
A crucial part of goal-setting is self-awareness. If you don’t take honest, open-eyed stock of the person you are, how can you figure out who you should be? What is standing between you and who you want to become? What steps can you take to eliminate those obstacles?
Do you want to be in a serious relationship? What’s stopping you? Do you go on dates? Do you open up? Do you really put yourself out there? Is the a dating app or a means of networking you haven’t tried?
Do you hate your job? Is your company the problem? Is it your industry, your title?
Are you lacking meaningful friendships? Do you want to learn a new skill?
There are so many ways to improve yourself, but only you know what you need to do. You are the only one who can make the life you want to live.
3. Make your goal SMART.
A good goal is SMART — that is to say, simple, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. Once you decide what you need to change, be realistic about what you can accomplish. Set a simple, easy-to-articulate-goal, choose the parameters to measure it, and the time-frame in which it will be accomplished. This exponentially increases your chances of accomplishing your goal.
4. Push yourself out of your comfort zone.
Don’t be afraid to try new things. No one grows inside their comfort zone. Does your goal make you vulnerable or uncomfortable? That’s good. That’s conducive to learning, growing, and improving. Embrace discomfort, embrace new experiences, embrace a little bit of fear. You’re only going to be a better person for it.
5. Don’t judge yourself.
It’s a cliche to say that no one’s perfect, but it’s true. You’re going to make mistakes. You’re going to have setbacks, and you’re going to fall short. This is part of your journey, and it’s only going to make you stronger. Instead of judging yourself, embrace yourself and choose self-compassion. What would you say to a friend who’d made the same mistake?
6. Celebrate your success.
If you follow the tips outlined in this article, you’re going to have success. It’s okay to celebrate and to reward yourself. There’s nothing like the feeling of accomplishment that comes from achieving your goals — and yeah, that means New Year’s resolutions, too.