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25% of people abandon their New Year’s resolutions after one week. And 60% of people leave them within six months. Why is this happening?
Part of the problem is setting unrealistic goals. But what if there was a way to set up goals that you could actually achieve them?
Check out this post or listen to the podcast to learn how to make goals you will actually achieve.
This episode is sponsored by Organized Choas
Set goals that motivate you
How many times have you set up a goal because you think that that’s what you should be doing? Or that’s what your parents told you you should do? Or maybe it was society or your spouse.
Whatever the case is, other people and other things are put on pressure on you to have specific goals and dreams, and they’re not goals and ideas that you want to pursue.
So you get so busy living someone else’s life, and then we end up not reaching those goals and frustrated.
Instead of pursuing someone else’s dreams, be like a kid, and dream your wildest dreams. We tell our kids that anything is possible because it is.
Now it’s your turn. You need to tell that to yourself sometimes and let yourself dream and come up with big goals for yourself that may not make everybody happy.
The reason that many people give up on their goals by mid-January and definitely by February is that they hate the goal.
So let’s start by setting a goal that inspires you and gets you excited.
So think about what lights you up and gets you excited. What are your hobbies? Where are some of your passions? What are some of your interests?
These are the things that you want to start thinking about when you’re setting up your goals.
Andrew Carnegie said it correctly, “If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hopes.”
Take some quiet time for yourself and write in a journal or a piece of paper goals that inspire you.
Write down everything that comes to mind. Even if it sounds ridiculous or something that you would never want to do, get it out of your head on onto paper.
Set SMART Goals
I’m sure you’ve probably heard of it, but just in case if you haven’t heard of smart goals, SMART stands for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound.
You can substitute some other words for some of the letters here, but those are typically the words that you’ll use for smart goals.
So when it comes to a goal and make it as particular, you don’t want to have some vague go like, Oh, I want to lose weight, or Oh, I want to read more books, or mm, I want to travel more.
When making your goals specific, consider asking yourself these questions.
- What do I want to accomplish?
- Why is this goal important?
- Who is involved?
- Where is it located?
- Which resources or limits are involved?
Next, you want to make your goal measurable so that you can see your progress and know when you’ve accomplished your goal.
So going back to the example of I want to lose weight.
Okay, so you lost one pound. Did you accomplish your goal?
You lost 10 pounds, did you accomplish your goal?
Making your goal measurable and will allow you to know when you have accomplished your goal. So think about how much, how many, how will I know when I’ve achieved it?
Next, you want to make your goal achievable.
So a lot of times, we make these massive goals. I’ll be honest. I want to run a 5K, but your girl has difficulties just running.
I know running a 5k is a challenge, so I will not set up a goal of running a marathon right now because I know I can barely run a mile without feeling like I’m going to die.
So these are the things that you want to think about when you’re making your goal achievable.
Is it something that you actually can accomplish? Is it realistic?
Is it based on other constraints such as financial factors or something physical that will prevent you from achieving these goals?
So really think about making it something real.
Next, make your goal-relevant.
You want to ask yourself these questions:
- Does this seem worthwhile?
- Is this the right time?
- Does this match our other efforts/needs?
- Am I the right person to reach this goal?
These are the things that you want to think about when you’re making your goals relevant.
Going back again to me running the 5K. Making the goal to run a 5K is fine, but right now, my big focus is getting excellent on the Physical Readiness Test (PRT) for the Navy.
So I need to be focusing on conditioning for the stationary bike because that’s what I’ll be doing to complete the test.
So running at 5k is not relevant for me right now.
And then lastly, you want to keep things time-bound.
So the biggest problem with goals is we don’t put a time constraint or put a time limit on our goals.
So instead of generically saying I want to lose weight, put a deadline on that goal.
Is it in six months, six days, six weeks? Like what is the time limit on it?
People who vividly describe their goals are 1.2-1.4 times more likely to accomplish their goals. So take your time and be specific and make your goals SMART.
When you follow the SMART method of setting your goals, it makes your goals more achievable.
And breaks down your goals for you so that you know exactly what you need to do to achieve your goals.
Write your goals down
Once you have your goals, write them down.
Don’t just type them into your phone or on a Google Doc. Physically write out your goals.
You are 42% more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down.
Writing down your goals helps to remind you of what you are trying to achieve.
Plus, you have access to review your goals at a later time.
Having your goals written down helps you to keep track of your progress.
Make a plan
Take some time to reverse engineer your goals so that you have an idea of action on how you will accomplish your goal.
So break down your goal and come up with a plan on how you’re going to lose that weight.
- Are you going to be meal prepping?
- Are you doing intermittent fasting?
- Are you using supplements?
- Are you going to use Noom?
What is the plan? What are you going to do to reach that goal?
Break your goal down so that you know precisely step by step what you need to do.
Manage the risk
So your goal is all mapped out for you now. Next, you want to manage the risks.
Think about what is going to come up and be challenging for you when it comes to reaching your goal.
Go through where there’s going to be resistance when it comes to this goal.
Doing this will help you to see where you may need help or extra defense when the resistance comes so that you are not quit to give up.
Remember, if you focus on the resistance, it will only get stronger.
The way to overcome it is to focus on the goal—the thing you want.
Now when it comes to having a goal, it is so important to have some accountability, whether it be internal, external, both.
I like to have external accountability.
I like to have someone that I can go to and say, “Hey, this is my goal. I’m going to finish it this week. If I don’t finish it, then you need to come and find me.”
Usually, they don’t have to come to find me. I don’t like letting anyone down.
So I’m going to get the thing done. And that’s the thing.
When you have accountability, you’re more likely to get things done even when you don’t want to do it.
Some internal accountability can be with a habit tracker, writing in a journal, or keeping things on a calendar.
Whatever you prefer, use something so that you can see it, and you can keep track of your goal yourself.
The next thing I like to suggest is to visualize yourself reaching your goal.
When you can see yourself achieving your goal, it makes us so much sweeter, and it helps you to stay motivated.
After accomplishing the goal of losing weight, you will feel confident, look good in your dress and have people turning their heads to look at you.
Visualize all of that and take note of how you feel.
Lastly, keep some statements on hand.
You know as well as I do that that little negative voice in your head is going to come up and start talking garbage when you start working on your goals.
You want to have some affirmations to knock those little voices back down.
Also, fear and doubts are going to kick in.
So these affirmations that you pick for yourself will help you to keep your mind focused and help you to move in the direction of achieving your goals.
Let me know what you think in the comments. What are you doing to make your goals achievable?
04:59 – Set goals that inspire you
07:17 – Making SMART goals
12:39 – Write your goals down
15:41 – Accountability
17:48 – Use affirmations
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Related blog post
- 15 Things You Don’t Have Time For When Pursuing Dreams and Your Goals
- 15 Simple Self-Care Tips to Help You Reach Your Goals
- Time Management Strategies for the Overwhelmed Mom
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Featured Mom Win
This week’s mom win comes from Calbrail Banner. You can find her on Instagram at @brunchboardrooms
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“Awesome Call” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License
Angie Emde says
I love listening to podcasts so I’ll definitely head over to your podcast and listen. As with goals I always write down my goals but this year I also created a vision board. I’m finding the vision board and visualization powerful as I see and feel my goals daily, which encourage me to take action. Thank you for sharing all these useful goal setting points.
Hey, Angie. I hope you enjoy the podcast. Vision boards are so helpful. I remember creating one while I was in my first year of dental school. It had a house, a stick figure of a family of four and a car that I wanted at the time. Almost 8 years later I achieved everything that I had on that vision board. I a believer in vision boards and have one sitting on my desk that I look at every day that I get to work.
This is a super post because so many people are wayyyyy to busy living someone else’s life and pursuing their dreams. You make helpful points that I’m going to keep in mind when I set goals. Thank you!
Thank you, Heather. Yes, I have seen it myself way too many times. And there was a point of time that I was the one living someone else’s dreams.
Great post. It’s so important to make goals we can actually achieve. Being excited and motivated by the goals we want to accomplish is so important. Thanks for sharing
Thanks Divine. I agree with you.
These are some AWESOME tips! I took notes. Sometimes I set goals s if they’re chores I think that’s my problem.
Thanks, Valerie. lol at chores. I am guilty of that myself.
Poovanesh Pather says
Great post. You may set SMART goals but you need to use affirmations and visualization to makecthem happen.
Thanks. Yes, I totally agree with that.
Corinne | my jEARNey says
All great tips on goal setting, thank you. I usually like to add ER at the end of SMART: Evaluate and Reward. Maybe it’s just me but I like to evaluate my progress regularly to see what I can improve and I can celebrate quick wins. I’m also somewhat motivated by rewards or I’ll just dawdle haha.
I love that! I am definitely going to start adding an ER to my SMART goals. I usually evaluate, but I am bad about the rewards. I am trying to work on celebrating and giving myself rewards.
I love creating new goals! Last year I achieved most of my goals, and this year I am ready to accomplish so many new goals
That is awesome Lara. It always feels good when you set a goal and achieve it.
This was a great post! I think going even a step further and putting our SMART goals on a Vision Board would provide even more motivation when you see all your goals for the year in one place everyday! Traveling more on a budget is mine!
Thank you, Destiny. That is a good idea. I have a vision board and I can see how I can incorporate my SMART goals on the board now that you mentioned it. Thanks!
This is really great advice.
I am a very goal oriented person and I enjoy reading and learning anything I can about goals. Thanks for the reminder about SMART Goals because that is something that I have been forgetting to utilize.
Val, whenever I make SMART goals are so helpful. For the longest time, I kept saying I want to lose weight as a goal but got nowhere because I was not specific enough.