Not-So-New Year's Resolutions: 4 Steps to Goal Setting Success by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

By Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

 June at last!  May is without a doubt my least favorite month of the year, and it’s not just the dreary weather.  Mayis the month when I usually realize that I’ve already lost sight of the goals on my resolution list.  That is until a friend of mine insisted I participate in a little goal writing exercise during our girls’ night out.  The small group of women let out more than a few groans at her suggestion, but we figured why not give it a try?  It was then that I learned a few simple steps to bring any goal within reach.planning-ahead

Make It a Priority

Before you begin setting your goals, take a few minutes to list out four or five things that matter most to you, such as family, career, health or spirituality.  Taking a look at what we truly care about will help us set attainable goals in areas of our lives worthy of the effort. 

Be Specific

Once you have a list of the most important things in your life, set specific goals to improve in those areas.  For example, don’t set a goal to spend more time with friends, instead set a goal to call a friend once a week, or invite a friend out once a month for coffee.

Write It Down

Writing goals down doesn’t just solidify them in our minds, it serves as a much needed reminder.  When my friends and I took the time to write down our goals that evening, I didn’t think too much of it.  It was only later, as I stumbled across my list while thumbing through my notebook, that I realized the advantage of such a practice.  I encountered my list of goals many times throughout the year.  When I took a look at that sheet of paper, my zest to achieve my goals was renewed.

Celebrate Success

When you have made progress on one of your goals, reward yourself.  A pat on the back, or night on the town for your hard work is incentive to keep heading in the right direction.  Personally, I find that a good piece of dark chocolate does the trick on most occasions.  Setting goals with a group of like-minded friends makes celebrating our successes that much more enjoyable.

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