It's so easy to set goals for a New Year. With so much hype and enthusiasm all around you, emotions run high. Ambitions overflow, and you can't wait to get started.
But even the best intentions never seem to last for long. A week or two into the New Year, and you're already off track and berating yourself, wondering what just went wrong. How could something that started so good, feel so bad?
No, you're not a failure. The truth is something much more common than you think. You were a victim of poor planning, and a loss of impetus could never have been sustained under the old model. Thankfully, there's a fix for this, and it can be accomplished in four easy steps.
Step 1: Self-Examination
Look at the goal critically. Why did you make it in the first place? Is it possible you set your sights on something that wasn't practical or even necessary? If this is the case, drop the goal now before you waste any more time on something you don't even need. If not, then keep going on to the next step.
Step 2: Set the Goal
It might be the goal was never clearly defined in the first place. What exactly were you trying to accomplish? Turn the goal into something you can clearly measure. Trying to lose weight? How many pounds? Wanting to put away money for a trip to the Bahamas? How much do you need? Here's also an excellent place to give yourself a reality check. Make sure your goal is reasonable and even healthy. Not convinced? Ask people who have made similar goals in the past and accomplished them.
Step 3: Schedule Success
Now that you have a goal, what is your game plan? Pull it apart into smaller steps. Going back to our previous examples, how many pounds are you trying to lose each week? For the trip to the Bahamas, how much money are you saving out of each paycheck? Be sure to schedule those steps to make these goals feasible. Put trips to the bank on the calendar. Or set up an auto-withdrawal on a specific date.
Step 4: Check Your Progress
If you thought you were done, you're not. Goals take time, usually all year to accomplish. Make sure you do a check-up once a month to see how you're doing. If you're slipping anywhere, don't panic. Simply go back through the process to put yourself back on track again.
Remember, failure is never an excuse to quit. The best lessons come when we get off track. So long as you're ready to throw yourself back into the game, you're going to be just fine. It really is going to be your best year ever!