Stop making New Year’s Resolutions & start making SMART goals that work for you.
It’s January, which means it’s time for new year’s resolutions. Did you know that only 9% of individuals successfully keep their resolutions, 23% quit in the first week and 64% after a month?
Why is that? Well, most people don’t make clear enough goals, and even ones that do, they don’t write them down or keep track of them. Why not think of your resolutions as your personal goals and KPI’s like you have at work? We work hard at work to achieve and exceed our KPI’s. Don’t our personal goals deserve the same attention and respect?
So, if you don’t want to go down the forgotten resolutions path, rather set goals, and achieve them. Setting goals should be a productive exercise — an opportunity to better yourself. But coming up with a long list of goals can be counterproductive as you might lose focus. Rather have a few goals and stick to them.
Make ‘SMART’ goals
When coming up with goals, it might be a good idea to have them meet these five criteria as created by Professor George T. Doran:
1. Make them SPECIFIC
Try to identify exactly what it is you want to achieve.
Don’t say: Read more
Do say: Read 23 books in 2023
2. Keep them MEASURABLE
If possible, try to quantify the result so that you know when you’ve hit the goal.
Don’t say: Get fit
Do say: Jog three miles in fewer than 30 minutes
3. Ensure they are ACHIEVEABLE
A good goal should stretch you out of your comfort zone but not be completely unrealistic. Consider breaking bigger goals into smaller, more achievable steps so you feel you’re making progress.
Don’t say: Lose 10 kilos
Do say: Lose 800g a month
4. Make them RELEVANT
Ask why this goal is relevant in your life.
Don’t say: Have more work-life balance
Do say: Be home for dinner with my kids every day so that I can hear about their day and bond with them
5. Make sure they’re TIME-BOUND
Always include a date so you know when you must accomplish your goal. A goal without a date is just a dream.
Don’t say: Cut down on smoking
Do say: Stop smoking by March 1 2023