Rumor has it that only 29% of Americans made resolutions for 2022. Where I can understand the hesitation to plan, I still believe wholeheartedly in the act of living intentionally through planning and goal setting. Setting goals is something vitally important to fostering growth in our lives and careers. However, effective goals are very different than stating a hope or intention. What does an effective goal look like?
I love a SMART goals.
- Time bound
A SMART goal is one with a clear end in sight and the success of it can be measured. For example, a typical resolution is to “be healthy.” While this is important, there are various ways a person can be healthy, such as food choices, meditations, or exercise. Instead, making a goal to get closer to the intent of being healthy is slightly more effective. For example, setting the goal of “running one mile without walking by the end of January,” helps define success, making it easy to know if you are on track to reach your larger resolution. Likewise, instead of wishing to “have more time,” set a goal to “spend 10 minutes planning each week.” Being more specific in what you want to accomplish makes it easier to identify tasks or habits to help you reach your goal.
Once you have SMART goals in mind, write them down where you will see them often. People are 40% more likely to reach a goal when it is written down. It also helps to note why you want to achieve your goals. Knowing why you want something will provide motivation to keep pushing then things get tough.
With goals clearly defined, consider making a task bank of steps needed to reach your goal. For example if your goal is to “paint your bedroom by the end of the month” you might have the following tasks:
- Review options in magazines or online
- Select 3 possible colors
- Purchase samples to top colors
- Test sample colors
- Select final color
- Purchase paint, tape, rollers, etc.
- Select date to paint
- Ask a friend to help
With a well-defined goal and a list of necessary tasks, you can simply schedule tasks during your weekly planning sessions to ensure you are inching towards your goal.
Again, defining SMART goals and working towards them incrementally will ensure you are ultimately reaching your New Year resolutions.
This is the process I call Goal Planning and work with many clients on implementing into their lives. If you would like to talk more about applying Goal Planning to your life, be sure to contact me.