As 2010 drew to a close, a lot of us were thinking about the things that we’d like to achieve in the following year. I for one, have always had about a 50% completion rate on goals for the new year, and I realize now that I need to take a closer look at all of the things that go into successfully keeping resolutions. In my opinion, New Year’s resolutions require…
1. Intention – the willingness to openly declare that you want to achieve these goals, however large or small, has the effect of forming a contract with yourself.
2. Accountability - in the form of a good friend or two who is willing to badger your Inner Slacker to ensure that you actually follow through on the things that you said that you will.
3. Flexibility - ensuring that your goals are not so rigid or “do-or-die”that you have difficulty achieving them. This is not to be misconstrued as providing yourself an “out clause”; it’s simply allowing yourself some wiggle room
4. A Light-Hearted Approach – this ties into number (3): be gentle with yourself. Setting goals shouldn’t feel heavy and severe.
5. Tiny, Measurable Steps – There is an Ashanti proverb that says that the way to eat an entire elephant is to eat it one bite at a time. Goals are the same way. Breaking one up into small, sequential parts makes it seem much less daunting to achieve.
Here’s a website that I’ve found helpful for staying on top of my goals. Sometimes it’s just helpful to seem that I’m not the only one that has things to accomplish in the next three hundred sixty-five days. I can search for people with similar goals by key word, and people also comment on the status of their lists. Cool stuff.
So here’s to a prosperous New Year for each of you; may the goals that you achieve be limited only by your imaginations. Stay safe for the holidays, and stay focussed for the upcoming year