The New Year brought with it new hope, motivation, new opportunities and possibilities. We made some great intentions and decisions at the beginning of the year to achieve definite goals and some positive lifestyle changes.
We are now at the end of Dec, and I am wondering if those New Year Resolutions are set and ready to go. Or maybe there will not be any resolutions set this year?
Have you maybe decided that resolutions do not work and you do not do them anymore? Perhaps you have outgrown them? Or maybe you really did try to introduce some changes, made some headway and find that somehow it takes too much to persevere? Some of us set out the New Year with the intention of wanting to get a handle on stress; yet we are plagued by having more stress just trying to manage stress! The irony of it!
Well, do not despair. You do not need to allow stress to affect your sleep patterns, your mood, your relationships, your health, in general the quality of your life. If you find that you are not doing as well as you want to in sticking to your New Year Resolution this is the time to analyze, re-evaluate and adjust to aim sharper. You are certainly able to make adjustments to bring your goals back on track.
– So what is not working?
– How do you know it is not working?
– Perhaps it is and you are not able to see its progress?
Much care needs to be put in setting New Year goals. Because if that is not done properly it can bring more disappointments and do more harm than good.
We have heard of setting goals to be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound. Many of us know that, goals are SMART! Yet here lies too the common mistakes in setting goals.
Are you setting your goals too rigidly? Was it specific where it needs to be yet with some room for adjustments?
So instead of saying you will do your workout every morning at 6am, 3 times in a week for half an hour, you can schedule a work out 3 times in a week and leave it flexible for when and how you will work that out.
You want to be able to focus on having the workout and not where or how you do it. It can be in your basement, it can be in the evening after work or it can be at the gym. The key is to have specifics about what counts and not the peripherals. For some setting your routine too tightly gives you a sense of overwhelm, and we don’t want that. Yet for some, you welcome that level of details. The key is to know yourself and set it so it works for you.
Know too that there are always possible interruptions like having house guests, special breakfast meetings, or that occasional emergency where you need to bring your children to school earlier or to the clinic. So beware that you allow for fluidity in your schedule instead of painfully trying to stick to 6am workouts.
This way you won’t feel like you have not kept your “resolution”, when it fact you are working towards achieving your goal of having work out 3 times in a week.
How are you measuring success in implementing the goal/plan? Are you looking for obvious visible results or do you consider the effort put into it as well?
Very often, in forming new habits and life styles, a lot of work goes underground, they are not seen. And it is important to note the effort as well as the result. While you may not see any lost in weight, your body could be toning, strengthening and you are building resistance. So look at the correct measurements and use the correct tools to measure your success.
An improvement in relationship does not happen overnight, and you can count all the hours of bonding, sharing, getting to know each other and gaining understanding as a great step towards your success. Look at the correct measurement. In the next article we will continue to consider the remaining three elements of setting SMART goals, we will look at the ART of setting goals!
So have a second look at your goals, start with adjusting these two aspects of your goals and see the difference they make in your progress ahead!