Can you believe 2018 is here? Even though it’s just another day on the calendar, there’s something that feels so good about cracking open a brand new planner and starting fresh on the first day of the year. (You can check out my post about how day planner helps keep my stress in check here.)
Today I wanted to chat about New Year’s resolutions! It’s so inspiring to sit down and write out a list of things we will (or won’t) do over the next 365 days, but usually by February most of us have given up and we’re back to our old habits. That’s because simply saying you will do something isn’t enough to create change.
This year, I’m setting a list of goals for myself instead. Why? Because goals are actionable. Goals come with a plan and a deadline. Goals provide direction, and I can take steps toward them each and every day. That seems way more fool-proof than a resolution, don’t you think?
It’s exciting (and sometimes a little scary) to set new goals for yourself. Maybe it’s just me, but I toy with the idea of certain goals in my head, and then when it comes to actually writing it down I freak out. I think that’s mostly because I tend to get a little ambitious with my goals, and I don’t like to fail (but then again, who does?) It’s kind of a double-edged sword.
Over the years I have learned a few ways to set myself up for success. That doesn’t mean that I go easy on myself, I just try to be realistic. Another important part of setting goals is picking ones that are attainable in the amount of time you specify. I, for example, want to run a marathon someday. I am definitely not capable of doing that next month, but I will be after I train for a couple half marathons this year! (See my list below.)
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If you’ve already made a list of resolutions, don’t freak out! You don’t have to start from scratch. Just tweak them a bit and turn it into an actionable plan that nudges you in the direction of your goal. For example, if you wrote:
I want to go to the gym more.
That’s a great one! But how often are you going to go to the gym? Do you have a workout plan? How long will each of your workouts last? I ask all these questions not to stress you out, but to help you make your goal as specific as possible. Try writing this instead:
I will go to the gym for 1 hour at least 4 days per week.
See what I mean? It’s still the same result, but you have a way to gauge your progress! By being specific, you can ask yourself the tough questions up front so you won’t be tempted to give up. Plus, you’ll be able to tell when you’ve actually met your goal! Then when you reach that goal, you can change it to challenge yourself even more down the road!
Below I’m listing a few of the personal goals I’ve set for myself in 2018 to help inspire you to write your own!
- Run a half marathon on April 29, 2018.
- Run a half marathon in under 2 hours on November 18, 2018. (I’m setting myself up to run a full marathon in 2019!)
- Read at least 1 book every month.
- Sell/donate clothes I haven’t worn in the last year by February 28, 2018.
- Spend the first 15 minutes of each day doing a devotional instead of looking at my phone.
- Floss every day. (I struggle with this, you guys.)
- Drink at least 2 liters of water every day. (And no, the water in my coffee doesn’t count.)
- Organize my digital life by January 31, 2018. (i.e. delete apps on my phone I never use, organize my music library, delete photo duplicates and back them up on my computer, etc.)
- Begin (and stick to) a skincare regimen by January 31, 2018. (If you have recommendations for products, let me know!)
- Write down one thing I am grateful for each day.
That’s all I’ve got for you today! I hope this helps you to write a list of goals for yourself this year that will help you become the best version of yourself. Share some of the goals on your list in the comments below! I want to know what dreams you’re chasing after in 2018!