We’ve talked about the difference between goals and resolutions. This distinction is important when it comes to moving forward with our challenge. You’ve learned so far that a resolution is an idea, promise or philosophy for something you desire. Goals are the steps that will help you make that resolution a reality. A resolution is ongoing, while a goal has an endpoint. Combining resolutions with good goal setting can be the key to finding long-term success. Let’s take a look at how this combination works.
Define Your Goals
First thing’s first. You need to clearly define the goals that will support your resolution. It’s okay for your overarching resolution to be a bit abstract. For example, you may go with the standard, “I want to become healthier.” We’ve discussed how that’s kind of a vague statement and is likely to result in failure. Fortunately, you can beat the trap of breaking your resolution by supporting it with defined goals. These could include the number of pounds you’d like to lose over the next six months, the types of changes you will make in your diet and the kinds of physical activity you plan to include in your life, along with the number of times you’ll work out each week. These goals are clear and specific. You can measure them, and they have an end point. Just because they end, however, doesn’t mean they can’t be revised or added to in the future.
Make a Plan
Next, after you’ve defined your goals, it’s time to make a plan for how to achieve them. In future posts in this challenge, I’ll address some hard-hitting strategies for making the most of your goal-setting. For now, just know that you’ll need a plan if you want to maintain your motivation as you strive to reach your goals. Your plan should involve aspects like how you will measure your success, at which points you will check on your progress, who you may need assistance from in order to succeed in your pursuits and in what ways will you know you have reached each goal. Practical examples can include weighing yourself and recording the numbers on a weekly basis, talking to your family about proposed menu changes for the household or writing regular workout times on your calendar.
Follow These Tips
In addition, there are some general guidelines that can help you as you begin the process of creating your resolutions. Be patient with yourself. As I noted previously, achieving change doesn’t happen overnight. Cut yourself some slack if you mess up. Just get back on track with your plan as soon as you can. Also, remember that it’s not “all or nothing.” Every baby step you take is progress in the right direction. Finally, while being realistic is important to your success, you also want to avoid challenge altogether. Celebrate your milestones. Each hurdle you clear is a reason to be proud of yourself and will help to motivate you to move onto the next goal.
This is how you combine resolutions with goals in order to reach your most-desired achievements. Moving forward with purpose in life is essentially what this challenge is all about. I hope you’re starting to see that these things are possible.