Why is it that so many individuals set goals at the beginning of the year, only to find they abandon the achievement of those goals a few weeks later? I heard on the radio the other day the average time it takes a person to give up on their New Year goals is 18 days. I was shocked and saddened. At the same time, I thought “This is an opportunity for me to help individuals, especially moms, stay true to their goals.”
Goal setting is something I’ve been doing for years. It’s also a habit I instill in my family. While I’m not perfect at achieving every one of my goals, I have a fairly decent track record. I want to share just a few simple steps you can use to stay on track instead of falling and staying off the wagon.
- Write your goals down. I prefer to keep my goals in plain sight rather than keeping them tucked away in a notebook where they can be easily forgotten. I’ve worked with a lot of moms. Many times, a mom will forget what she committed to work on in between sessions. Even when I provide her with a typed list of her goals, this list often isn’t translated into action. I believe the main reason is the goals aren’t front and center where she can review her progress on a daily basis. Put your goals on index cards or a sheet of paper and hang them where you’ll see them every day.
- Set goals that you can measure. Sometimes we set goals that are vague or difficult to translate into action. For instance, if your goal is to develop more patience with your children, that’s difficult to measure. How will you know if you’re being more patient? However, if your goal is to stop yelling, that you can measure. As a matter of fact, you could even count how many times you yelled throughout the day. A goal to lose weight is too vague, but a goal to lose 20 pounds is measurable.
- Break down bigger goals into smaller steps and set individual goals for these steps. For example, a mom entrepreneur may have a goal to establish a consistent marketing plan. A lot goes into marketing a business, and this goal needs a lot of smaller actionable items. Some steps might be to increase Twitter followers by 50 every month, hold a monthly teleseminar, or post to her blog three times per week. A business owner will have more success in following through on the goal of a consistent marketing plan if there are concrete steps she can measure.
- Lastly, track the progress on your goals. You can use checklists, graphs, or any other form to show visual progress. Tracking your progress helps you see where you are with your goals and inspires you to keep going. It has the ability to highlight your accomplishments and gives you reason to celebrate. Recording your progress will actually attract more of what you’re working to achieve.
What goals do you have for this year?