Do you start the year with great intentions and resolutions, only to be back to your normal ways a month later? Let 2016 be the year you start and follow through on your goals by avoiding these common pitfalls:
ACTIONS VS. OUTCOMES
Running a 5k, losing 5kg or maybe even changing your career are all great goals, but what will you be doing to get there? Many people set broad goals without thinking about the daily actions they need to take to get there. The more specific you are about when, where, and what you will be doing to achieve your goals, the more successful you will be.
Start by breaking down your goal into monthly, weekly or even daily targets that are achievable for the time you have available and your lifestyle. Then plot them in your diary or smartphone to keep yourself accountable.
NOT THINKING ABOUT THE ‘WHY?’
It’s easy to fall into the trap of what you should be doing, without thinking about why you’re actually doing it? How often have you said, I should be eating more vegetables, attend the gym three times a week or have two alcohol free days a week? Instead, consider why these goals are important to you. Asking the ‘why’ question engages emotions and creates a meaningful purpose to the goal. Then simply, use your why to motivate you on those days you feel like quitting – it’s got more power than you think.
DITCH THE ‘ALL AT ONCE’ APPROACH
Trying to overhaul your diet, personal life, style, career, and finances? You may be spreading yourself too thin if you try and tackle all your goals at once. After you’ve written down your goals, ask yourself two questions:
- On a scale of 1 to 10 how important is it that I achieve this goal?
- On a scale of 1 to 10 how confident am I that I can achieve this goal?
Whichever goal scored the highest on both questions is the one you should start with. It’s better to whole ass one thing, than half ass many.
The journey to reach your goal may involve a few twists and turns, which is why having a contingency plan is a smart move. For example, if it’s pouring with rain on your running day, what will you do instead? If you’re working late at the office, how will you ensure you eat well? A bit of forward thinking and planning around these instances is a sure-fire way to help you stay on track.
FAILING TO DEFINE YOUR OWN SUCCESS
Success means many things to many people. For example, losing weight could mean seeing the numbers go down on the scale for one person, while for another person it may be feeling less joint pain in their knees. Define success as it applies to your own personal situation and track your progress frequently against that measure.
WHAT RESOLUTIONS WILL YOU BE MAKING IN 2016?