Some call them resolutions. Some call them goals. And if you’re like most people, you’ve likely called them off by now. Or will as soon as your determination wavers.
The turn of the calendar to a new year is always a time of reflection on the year just past, and a hopeful look ahead to the coming year. The month of January is even named after a mythical two-faced Roman god who could look behind and ahead of him at the same time.
While some of the goals people set for the coming year can be lofty, like pursuing a new career, most are modest. They’re borne of a desire to become better people, more conscientious citizens, more responsible friends and family members. Some come from a fundamental desire to live a longer, fuller life. After all, we’re only here for a limited time, we might as well make the best of it.
But for most, change doesn’t come easily. We are, after all, creatures of habit. And even when those habits aren’t good for us, they can be hard to break.
The first step to achieving a personal goal is to assess where you are today. That means getting on the bathroom scale, opening that bank statement, checking the crisper drawer in the fridge.
Then it’s time to figure out where you want to be. Be specific. Don’t just say you want to lose weight, determine how much. Don’t just say you want to save money, decide how many dollars you want to have in your savings account.
Make that goal attainable. Create a plan. Break your goal down into bite-sized increments that will serve as markers on the road to successfully achieving it. And put those increments into a time frame.
Be prepared. Know your strengths and weaknesses and how you can use the former while overcoming the latter to reach your goal.
Most importantly, stay positive. If you believe you can do it, you will.