What is it about the 1st of January that gets us all so motivated? Why does it take a New Year for us to think big, plan and hope for better things ahead? And how do we keep the momentum going as the months tick by?
Well, I’m no expert. I can be the queen of procrastination and I can be quite easily distracted by all the shiny things… but I do love a bit of goal-setting and I really love getting clear on where I’m going and how I’m going to get there.
So for those of you who want this year to be different, let me give you my top 5 tips for setting a resolution you can actually achieve!
Before you start: Make yourself a coffee, find somewhere quiet and sit down with a pen and paper. Give yourself an hour to dream, think and plan.
1. Know your WHY and make sure you’re really invested in it
Rather than starting with a goal, I think it’s often better to start with your WHY. Usually this is an emotion; something you want to feel or be. Like, I want to feel better about myself and more confident in my body. Or I want to be a great role model for my kids. Or I want to enjoy looking after my baby without pain.
Once you’ve got picked a really good ‘why’ and you know it’s important to you, try translating that into an objective. For example- ‘I want be enjoy looking after my baby without pain’ might translate to I will improve my strength and seek help to reduce my pain.
2. Make sure it’s SMART
Now that you’ve got your objective, you need to really define it so it’s S.M.A.R.T:
3. Break it down
Sometimes those big goals can be as overwhelming as they are exciting. So break it down! Start by having a good idea of your baseline and break the steps down into timeframes. For example, if you want to run 5km within 3 months:
- measure where you are now (eg. I can’t run for more than 100m without getting puffed)
- set a goal for month 1 (eg. I will be able to run for 1 min / walk for 2 mins for 5km by end of month 1)
- set a goal for month 2 (I will be able to run for 2 mins and walk for 30 sec by end of month 2)
4. Write it down and tell someone
Whether you’re a paper diary person or a iPhone app person, choose a way to record your big goal and make it easy to check in regularly. You are SO MUCH more likely to achieve your goal if it is well-defined (following the steps above) AND written down.
Also, it doesn’t hurt to tell your nearest and dearest for a bit of extra accountability. Nothing like people asking ‘how’s that big idea coming along’ to give you a kick up the butt.
5. Reassess regularly
At every milestone or at least every 3 months schedule in another hour in your quiet spot with a coffee to look at your goals and see how you’re going. Are you on track? Are you still invested in your WHy or have you got a new one?