It's time to make some New Year's resolutions. We know, we know: many people have given up on these because they're often broken, resulting in bad feelings and guilt. But resolving to do things that will improve your health, happiness, finances, and relationships is a good thing. The trick is finding ways to create attainable goals that you'll stick with. We've come up with a few ideas for you to use when thinking about your 2018 goals and how you can reach them.
Use a Planner
Nebulous goals that live in your head might be hard to reach. You might change your mind on what needs to be done to attain them, lose sight of where you are in the process and how much you still have to do, and ultimately push to the back of your mind that you even set the goals.
Get a good planner that has both daily and monthly pages. This will make it easy for you to flip through and see what you need to accomplish each month, week, and day. Get different colored pens, highlighters, stickers, or anything else you need to fill out your planner and motivate yourself. Keep the planner where you will see it all the time.
Shorten Your Year
Many people achieve short-term goals better than long-term ones. There can be a tendency to procrastinate when the end-point is too far away, and then the goal is forgotten or the momentum is lost.
You can combat this procrastination tendency by making six 2-month goals instead of one 12-month goal. Break your year up into 2-month sections and figure out where you need to be at the end of each one in order to reach the big year-end objective. Repeat this process for each of your New Year's resolutions.
Make Your Plan as Comprehensive as Possible
Once you have your 2-month goals in place, take a look at your calendar and figure out which tasks you'll need to complete each week to accomplish them, and then further divide it down into daily tasks. You will find that, once things are broken down in this manner, it appears much more manageable. If it doesn't, consider re-working your 2-month goals until it does.
Plan in Some Rewards
While the ultimate reward of this process will be you keeping your New Year's resolutions and enjoying the benefits that come with reaching them, it helps tremendously to plan in various rewards for yourself for hitting the necessary milestones along the way. Once you reach a goal, celebrate!
You can do this for your 2-month goals and even your weekly ones. Make sure your rewards fit your accomplishments, but get them down on paper and follow through. The rewards can be simple or extravagant; whatever you believe you need to act as additional motivation to follow through with your plans.