Another Year, Another Resolution
Every January people make grandiose New Year’s resolutions that fall by the wayside – usually by sometime in early February. The problem is that resolutions without a plan of action are, more or less, just a wish list.
What do you want the coming year to be like? Do you have things you want to make happen this year? In general, almost everyone wants to make more money, have better relationships, lose some weight, learn something new, eat better, exercise more, and de-clutter their home.
I read self-help books by and listen to podcasts by several very smart people. I’m not going to lie to you and tell you I have this all figured out because I don’t. In fact, I’m writing this as much for me as for you. But, every time I take a small step toward implementing the things I learn, life gets a little better. Somewhere in my self-help journey, I was introduced to S.M.A.R.T. goals. There are slight variations, but the basic idea behind S.M.A.R.T. goals is that your goals should be:
Let’s look at a few examples.
Saying I want to be more spiritual this year is just a wish. Let’s turn that into a S.M.A.R.T. goal. You can plan to do specific things like read your Bible every day, pray every day, attend church regularly, and tithe on your income. Those things are specific.
And, they are measurable. You can measure how many times per week you read your Bible, how often you pray and attend church, and how much money you give.
Are these goals achievable? Yes. But, even high-performance automobiles take some period of time to get from 0 to 60. Maybe you need some intermediate steps to help you get going. Depending on your current schedule and financial situation, you may need to work up to reading your Bible every day or tithing a full 10% over a period of time – a specific period of time.
Are these goals relevant? Do they actually lead to living a more spiritual life?
Are these goals time-bound? When are you going to read your first passage of scripture? When are you going to give your first tithe?
Let’s try another one. Saying you want to go on more dates this year is a good resolution, but without S.M.A.R.T. goals, it’s just a wish. Make it specific. How often do you want to go out on a date? That’s a number. That is measurable. Is it an achievable number?
What do you need to do to make that number an achievable goal? Are there other goals you need to achieve to make that goal achievable? Like improving your conversation skills, your wardrobe, your physical appearance, your self-confidence, your body language? Getting out and meeting and talking to more people?
Are those things relevant to getting more dates? You bet.
When are you going to start working on the things that lead to going out on more dates? When will you go on your first date of the new year?
Break it Down
Another sound strategy is breaking big goals down into smaller goals. Going out on more dates this year is a very nebulous goal, more of a wish. Going out on a date every weekend is a specific, but big and intimidating goal. Striking up a conversation with two or three people – of the opposite sex – who you find attractive – this week, that is a specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-bound goal. That will lead to achieving your bigger goal of going on more dates.
Losing weight is another common resolution that usually just remains a pipe dream. What if we break that down into smaller S.M.A.R.T. goals? Can you schedule a twenty-minute walk every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday? Can you swap one high-calorie meal each day for something healthier? Those goals are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound.
And, each time you achieve one of the small goals you are one step closer to reaching your big goal. Plus, you build momentum and confidence with each little success.
Being Your Best
You get the idea. This year move beyond resolutions that are just wishes and hopes. Take concrete steps toward making this your best year ever. And that’s not necessarily about getting married or even finding Mr. Right or Mrs. Right this year. It’s about taking a few more steps toward becoming the kind of person who is attractive to the kind of person you would want to marry. It’s about taking steps every single day, of every single week, of every single year, toward becoming the best, most attractive ‘you’ you can be.
So – Happy New Year!
Get S.M.A.R.T. – turn your resolutions into S.M.A.R.T. Goals!
And, Thrive On!
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