It’s interesting to me how so many people set their New Year’s resolutions but fail within a few weeks (if not a few days). Why is that? I think that the problem is that most resolutions are unrealistic or general (I will lose weight, I will eat healthy, I will spend more time doing ____).

What’s your resolution? Do you see this pattern? Here’s some help…

Anytime you set goals you need to remember two things:

    1. Your level of commitment is crucialIf you are not ready to commit to change, whether it is a career change, losing weight, learning how to ride a horse, etc it won’t happen. You have to be committed to make it happen. Before you set your goal think about how committed you are to it. I have my career coaching clients measure their commitment to career change on a scale of 1-10. If it’s not at a 10, I ask them to think about what would make it a 10. How can they move it up the scale? You can read more about the importance of commitment here.
    2. Your goals must be SMART goals
      Yes most of you have heard about SMART goals by now (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Results-oriented {realistic/relevant}, Timely). The problem is that most people know what SMART goals are, but not that many are successful at creating SMART goals for themselves. You need to be able to set specific steps for you to be able to reach your big goal.I find that my clients are able to reach their goals when they create weekly and monthly checklists with small action steps. This helps keep their goal top of mind with tiny baby steps to reach it.
       
      Here’s an example – Many people say they want to lose weight in the New Year. That’s great – but how can it be a SMART Goal. My suggestion would be not to focus on the full year. Start smaller. So for example you might want to say that by April 1st you will have lost 10 pounds (specific – not just lose weight). It is a measureable, attainable, realistic, timely goal. Your baby steps in your checklist for week 1 might be to have a salad every day. Week 2 might be to add 30 minutes of exercise 3 times a week.

Let us know what your New Year’s Resolution is and how you have set SMART goals for yourself in the comment box below.

Happy New Year!

Hallie Crawford
Atlanta Career Coach