Posh Tip: Create Actionable Goals for the New Year

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The excitement has calmed, the sparklers have gone out, and the champagne bottles are empty; now it's time to think about what you want for yourself in this new year. Year over year, legions of people make new year’s resolutions and year over year, decidedly less amounts of people actually keep them. The idea of making resolutions has, in many cases, become synonymous with empty promises. So how can you hold yourself accountable to those changes you want to make in your life? Why not create actionable goals with bite sized steps that you can more easily sink your teeth into?

Associate with a word or a theme

By tagging the year with a word or a theme, you’re creating an association that you can be mindful of all year long. For example, my theme for 2011 was “abundance” and I dedicated all my activities to creating abundance in all areas of my life--from love to a new home to generating new business opportunities. I listened to lectures, repeated affirmations and used guided meditations, all year long, all centered on this theme. I found that zeroing in one theme helped tremendously with focus.

Set up a concrete plan that includes definitive steps

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Goals are less lofty hurdles when you can see a clear path to achieving them. For example, if you are resolving to find a new job in the new year, take a moment to sit down, consider carefully and list the steps that will aid you in accomplishing this. What companies are aligned with your desires for your ideal position? What research will you need to do? What websites will you need to visit? With whom might it be a good idea to network? With a plan in place, you’re less likely to end up in a rut of repeat actions.

Set mini-goals that achieve your overall resolution

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During this year, I plan to continue to work toward optimal physical health for my body. This means daily exercise and pushing myself to do new things. But this is a goal I’ve had every year; how do I keep myself from falling off? By setting a more concrete goal attached to the overarching one, which is to complete a half marathon next fall. Obviously I can’t go from the couch to 13 miles without training! Getting my body ready for the half will help me to achieve my overall fitness goal. This also brings me to my next suggestion….


Find someone to hold you accountable


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We’re more apt to stay on track when we know that someone is watching. In my case, my running buddies will hold me to getting out and hitting the pavement. So state your plans out loud to a friend, a trainer, a member of the same social club—anyone who is willing to call you out if they notice that you’ve been slacking.


Give yourself reminders

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Stick post-it notes to your mirror, make lists, create vision boards, repeat mantras, blog about it—whatever your method, just be sure to surround yourself with visual reminders to help you stay on course. I like to use Pinterest for vision boards, and I keep lists on lists on lists in my blackberry.



Do you make new year’s resolutions or create goals at the start of the year? What are they? How do you stay on track to completion?

4 comments :

  1. Great tips! What's your theme for 2012? I haven't narrowed mine down yet but I think that concept is very effective.

    Your spot on about breaking down big goals or resolutions into small steps and finding ways to hold yourself accountable. The smaller steps help keep things from feeling overwhelming.

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  2. Thanks chica! I'm actually going to continue with the abundance theme into 2012, as there are still some things I'd like to attract and accomplish. Should those things come to fruition, then I'll move onto what feels like the next natural theme. I really liked Rosetta's "alignment" and feel like that could work for me eventually as well.

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  3. I agree with you, you must hold yourself accountable. I've been meaning to lost an additional 10 pounds but I just kept putting it off. I think I may track my progress on my blog once a week--like on a Saturday. Post my meals and workout.

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  4. That's a great idea, Kalley! Then you'll feel a bit more accountable knowing that someone is reading about your progress.

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Thank you for all your perfectly posh comments. I appreciate you stopping by!

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