I’ve decided to start sharing my featured articles from the monthly newsletter I put together at work. It’s currently being published for seven apartment properties across Texas.
The New Year is upon us, and like they say, it’s the first blank page in a 365-page book. If you feel up to the challenge of a New Year’s Resolution, but don’t necessarily have a great track record with them so far, these steps can help you stick with it.
Choose a Goal: The first step is to figure out what you’d like to accomplish or change.
Write it Down: Put your goal in writing. Write down what success entails for you. How will you know when you’ve met it? How will your life be different when you achieve it? Be specific. Don’t just say something like, “I want to lose weight.” Say, “I want to lose 20 pounds.”
Tell a Friend: Accountability goes a long way. Recruiting a trusted friend to keep you on the right track and check in on your progress will keep you from getting into the rut of “Nobody knows, so nobody cares.”
Make it Bite-sized: A big reason people abandon their goals is they see it as one big thing. You’re allowed to set mini-goals that contribute to the larger goal. Using the example from earlier, you might make your first mini-goal five pounds. You might set yourself some weekly goals so that you are taking small steps all year instead of realizing you’ve fallen behind when the year is half finished.
Take the First Step: You know where you’re going, and you’ve drawn yourself a map. Now you have to get started. It doesn’t have to be a big step, just one step closer to the destination. Great plans are just plans if you don’t bring them to life.
Mostly Forward: Repeat after me: “It’s okay to mess up.” Don’t get discouraged if your mini-goals aren’t getting completed at the rate you hoped they would. As long as the steps you take are mostly positive, you’ll reach your goal in time. It might frustrate you to break a winning streak, but if you’ve taken 100 steps forward and only one step back, you’re still better off than where you started.
Celebrate Milestones: Include plans to celebrate important steps along the way. If you’re trying to break a habit, be sure the reward isn’t related to the habit. Then it becomes bargaining. A great way to stay motivated is to share your success with your friends. Let them share the excitement of your progress, and they’ll be eager for your next update.