It's the best time of year, when we get to spend the holidays with family and friends and show our grateful we are for all that we have. With all the celebrating comes New Years resolutions, as we look back at what we may have wanted to change during the past 365 days, and what we might be able to work on to better ourselves as 2018 approaches. After all, life is about growth, right? Who the hell wants to stay the same their whole lives, that doesn't sound like much fun.
Since you're probably thinking about a few New Years resolutions as the year 2017 not-so-slowly comes to an end in a couple of weeks, we want to make sure you actually keep up with them as 2018 hits us. That's why we reached out to Gretchen Hydo, a professionally certified life and business coach who's one of the most trusted in Los Angeles for her expertise, who offered up practical ways to keep those New Years resolutions and goals.
Set SMART New Years Resolutions
Successful goals have five main components. They are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely. A good example of a SMART goal is something like, "I will run on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 8 – 9 AM for 20 minutes, to build my endurance for a relay race I am participating in for my kids fundraiser in four weeks."
Define Your Why
Oftentimes people set a goal because it sounds good. They want the result, but they don’t necessarily want to have to do the work that it takes to get there. When you define your WHY — or your reason for wanting to make a change — you'll be more likely to achieve it. To make your WHY successful, make sure that your payoff is relevant to your life, and big enough for you to be motivated by.
To be successful in reaching your goal, it’s important to visualize yourself on each step of the journey. While the end goal is important, knowing the steps you will have to take along the way to reach it are paramount to your success. Make sure you can really see yourself as you are now, and how you will be once you reach your destination.
Make Your New Years Resolution Real
How do you look? How do you feel? What did you have to let go of along the way? Who helped you get there? How is your life better because of this change? What made it hard? Who supported you?
Back Down (Take Baby Steps)
When goals are too big, they become overwhelming. People often have many smaller goals that they need to hit in order to reach their ultimate goal. For instance, if someone says they are going to write a novel, it should be broken down into all of the steps that it might take to get there (write an outline, join a writing group, write a 1,000 words a day). For success, pick one mini goal at a time, achieve it, and then go on to the next one.
Breaking habits and patterns isn’t easy. It takes more than will power to do things differently. Make sure that you get support to reach the finish line. Whether you join a goal-setting group or have an accountability partner, be sure to surround yourself with people who can walk with you on your journey.
How Do I Save More Money As A New Years Resolution, 2018?
Deciding where your money will go may sound silly, but it can save you hundreds of dollars each month. Using a budgeting tool such as everydollar.com can help you get a firm grasp on what you spend monthly. At the beginning of each month, you enter in what your income will be and what your itemized bills will be. For bills that you pay on an annual basis, break up the payment into 12 monthly chunks and save it so that you have the money set aside when the time comes. Knowing and deciding where your money will go is the best way to save money in 2018.
What's The Best Way To Reach My Health Goals In 2018?
Define your motivation for reaching your health goals. How will it affect you and those around you? Many times, people know they should lose weight, eat differently and exercise. Sometimes the consequences are huge. Take a diabetic for example, not changing your lifestyle can lead to the loss of a limb and blindness. You would think that dire consequences would cause drastic changes, but they don’t. Working with people to help them define their personal motivation usually triggers the response necessary to take small strides forward that can lead to big changes.
Should I Set A Big Goal Every 2-3 Months, Or Am I Just Setting Myself Up For Failure?
It is always good to set a goal and then support yourself with smaller goals to reach it. For instance, let’s say that you want to write a novel. Giving yourself a timeframe of when you will have the table of contents complete and then the first chapter and so on, with a real timeline will help you to achieve your goal. Think of everything from when you will write the novel (M-F from 6 - 7 AM), to who can support you (my writing group, a coach), to the obstacles in the way (other commitments) and then come up with a realistic plan to get it done.
See more from Gretchen Hydo by checking out her website.
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