What do you hope to achieve this year?
January, the month of resolutions and high hopes for the new year.
How excited are you about this new year?
I was all excited about the new year until about day 2, then life kicked in and three family members have been sent to the hospital with various ailments. I’m hoping this is not what our new year will be about.
You may have some thoughts, plans, and goals for yourself this year and are finding your excitement diminishing as the days get colder and darker.
What we need is a boost of optimism and motivation.
In an earlier post I discussed how to turn your resolutions into intentions, you can read about this action plan here Make This Your Best Year – Turning Resolutions into Intentions.
Now that you have your list of goals for the new year and you’ve turned those goals into intentions, let’s look at how you can accomplish your new year’s goals.
Tackling a big gigantic goal during the 1st week of January is asking for failure.
You may want to lose weight, exercise more, go to bed earlier, learn to say “No” more often, all are achievable goals, but you may find yourself losing your motivation if all you’re focusing on is the end result.
Take your goal and break it down into 12-week increments. You may have a goal to lose 20 pounds this year. Set your intention, such as you will eat healthier this year. Then break the weight loss down into four 12-week goals. Break your 12-week goals down by week and then day.
To keep yourself motivated, focus on what you did today that was healthy. Write it down. Tomorrow do the same, and the same day after day.
You may have set multiple goals for yourself this year and I coach clients to habit stack. Work on one healthy habit at a time and then move to the next one.
You could take January to focus on healthy eating, February on physical movement, March on creating a better sleep routine.
Choose a healthy habit to work on with one of my Healthy Habit Programs.
Write Down What You Want
Your goals must be specific. Writing down that you want to lose weight is not a specific goal. Stating that you want to lose twenty pounds is specific.
When your goal is too broad, you are unable to track your progress, there are no moments of celebration, and you really don’t have any direction.
When you dive deep and write down the specifics of your goal, it will be easier for you to track progress, recognizing what’s working and what’s not working.
Losing weight is your broad goal. Losing twenty pounds is your target goal. Your intention is to eat healthier daily. Your specifics will be how are you planning to eat healthier each day. Write it down.
Journal your daily progress with a tracker.
It’s Okay to Slip and Fall
Just get back up and continue to move forward.
I slip up daily, but I have maintained my weight loss for over seven years.
Change can be hard, especially when you’re trying something new. New habits are not formed overnight. In fact, you may find yourself working on a new habit for months before the habit becomes a true habit.
Never allow yourself to give up just because you had a slip up today. Allow yourself to slip and fall, but always renew your commitment to yourself and keep up the good work. You’ll be glad you did when you find yourself reaching your goal.
Keep Your Timeframe Realistic
You are not going to lose twenty pounds in a week, I don’t care what the advertisement said. If you do, just know that is not a healthy way to lose weight. You are not going to run a marathon in the spring if you just started a walking program the first week of January.
Give yourself room to grow into this new mindset of reaching your goals. This is why I promote a 12-week goal calendar with your goals broken down into workable steps.
At the end of the 12-weeks, you look at where you are and adjust your goal calendar accordingly. Your calendar gives you direction and motivation to continue working on your goals.
Celebrate Your Wins
Learn to celebrate weekly. Ask yourself what worked this week and what didn’t work. Then ask yourself how you can improve next week. Your goal is to feel good about how well you’ve done this week. If you feel you had too many slip-ups, celebrate the fact that you got up, brushed yourself off, and are moving forward. That’s huge when so many give up by January 17th.
No matter what you call them – resolutions or goals, the new year is the perfect time to reset and refresh your habits. My Resolution Refresh Guide Workbook will help you set your intentions and goals for five areas of your life. Click the image below to get your copy today.
Happy New Year, and may your year be filled with healthy habits. Come over to my Facebook members group Healthy Living for Life and share how you’ll set your goals this year.