New Year Resolutions Matter and Here is How to Make Them Work!
It is almost that time of the year again where the phrase “New Year New Me” or equivalent, starts flooding your social media timeline - often accompanied by some inspirational image quote. Then as the new year progresses, many forget about ever making a resolution or do not see them through. New Year Resolutions (NYRs) matter because it represents personal characteristics, or situations in your life which you recognise need improvement. So now that you have recognised the “not-so-great” attributes which need improvement, it is time to get them fixed!
Making the list and checking it twice, here are a few ways to actually make a proper list of NYRs and some neat tricks, to fulfil them in the new year.
Set SMART Goals
First and foremost, all goals set whether for work, school or personal development have to be Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely (SMART). Setting goals which do not exhibit all of these traits, is setting yourself up for failure mainly because it lacks clear direction or thought.
Specific – Refrain from setting general goals like “I want 2017 to be great!” How would you define “great”? Is it to seek a better paying job, spend more time at the gym or enrolling for a professional training course on the weekends? Be sure to include as much detail as possible into your goal setting as it helps keep you focused on your end goal.
Measureable – Be sure to set goal markers along the way to keep track of the progress you have made to accomplishing your goals. Take wanting to save more money as a NYR. How much are you planning to save a month? In six months, how much do you need saved to ensure that you can reach your goal? If a NYR is not measurable, how is one to know if any progress is made? Knowing that you have made progress will give you a sense of accomplishment, spurring you on to make the continual effort to reach a goal.
Attainable – Is the goal you have set realistic? Wanting to save a million dollars within a year is not attainable or realistic, especially if your annual income is less than 30 thousand dollars. Aside from obvious factors when goal setting, do take your social and physical environment factors into consideration. This will help you set more well-rounded attainable goals, and prevent you from failing to achieve the NYRs you have made.
Relevant – Will the goals that you have set for yourself be beneficial to you now or in the future? Take pursuing a part-time degree for an example, it will mostly likely help you in terms of career advancement. In short, is your goal worth the effort and time?
Timely – Tag a due date to your goals. This enables you to keep your goals in check and will encourage you to pursue it within a certain time. It may be a NYR for 2017, but this does not necessarily mean that its due date is 2018 – some goals do not need such a long lead time.
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step,” this holds true for almost every plan and definitely applicable when it comes to NYRs. These goals are goals for a reason – they are not expected to be easily achieved within a short period of time. Break the task down into bite-sized goals and proceed with baby steps so that you do not feel overwhelmed and give up on your NYRs.
Place Your NYRs in View
Do not just list out NYRs only to chuck them aside and forget about them as the year progresses. Place the list in obvious places where you will look at daily, or better yet, keep a soft copy in your Smartphone and set periodic reoccurring alarms for it. This serves as a gentle reminder to the list of NYRs you have made and keeps you on track to complete the goals.
Keep Tabs on Your Progress
Similar to report cards and bi-annual reviews, it is important to keep check on your progress every few months – depending on your goal. Building on the “Measureable” component of making SMART NYRs, take the time to see how well you have progressed in your NYRs. For the goals which you have not accomplished as well, review the circumstances and make a greater push to see them through.
If one of the NYRs you have in mind for 2017 revolves around upgrading your skills, head on over here to find out which courses are available for you now!