The most popular resolutions in 2013 are: to eat healthy and exercise, drink less, learn something new, quit smoking, have a better work/life balance, volunteer, save money, get organized, read more, and finish my to-do lists.
What if we substitute the word maybe for "I resolve to...?" "Maybe I'll take better care of my health or maybe I won't." "Maybe I'll stop doing something or maybe I won't." "Maybe I'll try something new or maybe I'll make an excuse not to." You get the idea, it's not a commitment and that is why most of us get to the end of January and give up on our resolutions. We don't set goals; we don't say it like we mean it.
The basics to my action plan:
- Define the goal I am trying to achieve: I want to eat healthy and exercise.
- Set specific measurable smaller goals: I will go to the gym for 30 minutes a day 3 X a week. I will make a realistic assessment of what I currently eat and change my eating habits to reflect my healthier lifestyle, focusing on achieving a healthy balance.
- Pinpoint trigger fails: I have a sweet tooth and I snack throughout the day. To curb this, I will keep healthy snacks like fruit on hand for those must have sweet moments.
- Set realistic expectations for change: Set back moments happen. Don't give up, adjust your plan. You missed a day at the gym? Go the next day. Ate too much cake at the birthday party? Start over tomorrow making healthy choices. Don't give up!
- Record your achievements: This gives you proof of how far you've come. We often praise our children when they make changes towards their goals (or ours for them) but we often forget to praise ourselves. Keeping track allows you to see that you've made progress.
- Share your success with someone: We all like to hear a "You did a great job!" Tell a friend or your Mom, share it on your Facebook (if you are so inclined) but don't be afraid to share with someone that you achieved your goals and you are proud! (We can learn a lot from kids, they aren't afraid to tell us they just achieved a big milestone!)
That's my approach to goal setting. I live my life as if I'm running a business, because I am. I'm running the business of living. Life is about constantly setting and achieving goals to better ourselves. My goals focus on physical, mental and spiritual improvement so I become the best possible person I can be. What are your goals for yourself?