Filling my crisp, recently purchased planner can only mean one thing – time to write some “New Year’s Resolutions” for 2016. I don’t know about you, but I think I’m pretty good at writing resolutions. Keeping them, on the other hand, is another thing. A study by the University of Scranton found that in 2015, only 8% of the people who wrote New Year’s Resolutions were successful in achieving them! Why are so many people unsuccessful? Well, let’s take a look at the kinds of resolutions people make. Here are the top 5 resolutions of 2015:
- Lose Weight
- Get Organized
- Spend Less, Save More
- Enjoy Life to the Fullest
- Staying Fit and Healthy
These are good ambitions in theory, but how do you really determine if you are making any progress towards these resolutions?
During my schooling to become a dietitian, my classmates and I learned all about helping our clients/patients develop S.M.A.R.T. goals instead of generalized resolutions. This year I’m throwing out the resolutions and creating goals that I can actually achieve. The S.M.A.R.T. acronym will assist you and I as we begin to write goals for 2016.
Goals should be:
- Specific (Think: Who, What, Where, Why)
- Measurable (How much will you do? How often?)
- Action-Oriented (What behaviour will you change? What actions need to be done to accomplish this goal?)
- Realistic (Can you see yourself completing this goal? Is the goal too easy or too challenging?)
- Time-Bound (By what date does this goal need to be completed?)
I want to add one more letter to the acronym:
- Yours (Is this goal worthwhile and actually something you want to accomplish? If you don’t think the goal is important, you will likely not succeed in accomplishing the goal.)
Now let’s look back at the #1 New Year’s Resolution made in 2015 and recreate it using the “S.M.A.R.T.-Y.” acronym.
Challenge: Now that you are getting excited and are beginning to think of goals you would like to accomplish for 2016, take out your planner (or simply a notebook) and jot down a few ideas or share them in the comment section below!
Stay tuned for the second part of “New Year, New Goals” where I will be discussing 7 areas of life to include when setting goals, along with part 3 where I’m going to share a few, personal goals I have set for 2016!