5 Goal Setting Tips for 2017

It’s the new year and it’s a time when many of us take a look at our lives and reassess what we want to do and who we want to be. Now January is not the only time you can or need to do this but it seems to be the most popular time of year to set goals. So here are 5 tips to help you in your goal setting this year.

Set Realistic Healthy Goals

If you have a goal to lose weight (I use this because it seems to be quite popular in the new year) that’s fine. However, if you are a size 20 and say to yourself that you want to be a size 2 by year’s end, not only is that unrealistic it is also very unhealthy. That’s too much weight too fast. Plus you’ve got to be willing to think about and make the necessary changes in your lifestyle in general that will help you reach that weight loss goal. Are you willing to make those changes? If not, you are not being honest with yourself and the goal is not realistic. (Please note, it is very possible to get from a size 20 to a size 2 but slower is safer!) 

Do you have a goal to have a spotless house where everything is always put away? Great! Do you live with other people? Say, a spouse and possibly some other tiny humans. This isn’t a very realistic goal then. You would exhaust yourself mentally and physically trying to accomplish this goal. Make a healthier, more realistic goal of keeping your house as neat as possible as well as teaching your children how to pick up after themselves. These are attainable goals and they will keep you from pulling out your hair when everyone doesn’t share your passion for cleanliness and doesn’t cooperate. You’ll set the most realistic goal you can in this situation.

Write the Goal Down

You’ve probably heard this one over and over again. There is a reason for that. Repetition is the key to learning so when you write down your goals and see them often you will LEARN what they are and find a way to keep them. Write them down in a notebook or journal then post them somewhere you will see them often. This way you can’t let yourself off the hook at a later date by confessing that you forgot!

Write Down the Why

This is BIG! It will also help you with Tip One up there at the top (Set Realistic Goals). Now the “Why” doesn’t have to be super altruistic. It can be a selfish goal-that’s fine. But write down your “Why.” For instance, one of my goals is to eat healthy and prep my meals weekly. My “Why” is because I feel better when I eat like I should and I feel uncomfortable and sick when I eat unhealthy food. This is a great “Why” (in my humble, opinion) and reminds why I set and work to keep the goal in the first place.

Break the Goals down into Smaller Parts

This your plan to get those goals met. As in my example above to eat healthy, my plan is to do a one day meal prep for my weekly meals. I’ve got the tools I need for meal prep, the recipes, and the day of the week I intend to meal prep each week on my calendar. If I just said “I want to eat healthy” then that is pretty abstract and I have no “rules” or guidelines” for accomplishing my goal. What is healthy? I had to define that. That definition is a part of my plan to accomplish my goal.

Set a Date

I saw this year on Facebook one of my friends post that this year she did not have a resolution, she had a reservation. That’s powerful. That says that this goal isn’t just a hope or dream it’s a plan that will turn into an accomplishment. There are ways to look at this. First, it can refer to the time you spend working toward your goal. For instance, if you want to write a book put on your calendar that every Tuesday and Wednesday you will work on it for 2 hours each. I have my meal prep on my calendar for Sunday’s. It’s a set activity on my “To Do” list. Secondly, this refers to a date of completion. This will get your booty in gear and keeps your eye on the prize. You have deadline. This deadline could be that you’ll have your book finished by June 1st or you’ll finally get that extra bedroom (you know the one, it’s all messy and makes it look like you just moved into your house) all cleaned up and usable during the month of February and it will be complete by March 1st. Putting these finish lines on our goals help us when we plan to work on it and reminds us of what is available to us as a resource during that given time and encourages us to really work on it. Setting a date of completion and/or putting your plan in action on your calendar is probably the best thing you can do to encourage yourself to meet any goal you set!

So there you go, these are my 5 tips for setting better goals and keeping them.  Be sure to also let yourself off the hook a bit when you are first starting out on meeting a new challenge or goal. Change isn’t easy and does take some time to implement. Just stick to your guns. It may not be pretty and it may not always look the way you want it to but if you keep working on your plan, you’ll reach your goals. Happy goal setting


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