With the new year fast approaching, I took some time to reflect on the lessons I’ve learned and experiences I had this past year. I finally graduated university, visited my grandparents at the Philippines for the first time in 13 years, lost friends then gained awesome ones. It was an eventful year to say the least, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Now before I start with my goal setting tips, I want to tell you why you should set goals for the coming year. Many of us make new year’s resolutions about going to the gym more, eating better, working a little harder, spending more time with family and friends, and so on. But how often do we actually follow through with our resolutions? And I understand, sometimes unexpected situations come up and we may not be able to provide the same dedication and time as we intended to. My point is, when I notice that the gym is packed for the first 3 months of the year then it suddenly drops to the same regular people, something doesn’t add up.
I’m sharing with you my Goal Setting Tips because I know how it feels to fail. It doesn’t make any of us less than our awesome selves. We’re human and we’re resilient.
- Self reflect. Reflecting on the past year helps you identify your good and bad experiences. You might have more bad than good, and that’s okay. Reflect on your experiences and think about what you can learn from those experiences. When you are doing your reflection, don’t forget to show compassion to yourself. How would you console a dear friend if they were the one doing the reflection with you? The idea is to bring you greater awareness of your strengths and weakness to help you recognize the improvements you want to make for the new year
- Pick a theme. After doing a self reflection, you might feel a little overwhelmed with goals you want to achieve. Well, news flash! You need to take things one step at a time. For example, if you feel like you need to prioritize healthy & fitness this year, a theme example could be ‘Healthy Living’. So the goals you may set for the coming year has to do with improving your physical activity, trying out healthier alternatives for your meals, etc.
- Use S.M.A.R.T. goals technique. I was introduced to SMART goals while doing my undergrad.. It stands for: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic & Resources and Time Limited. This technique helps you break down your goals in smaller steps, contributing to a more general goal. Using this technique was also the reason why I’ve decided to pick a theme before diving into using SMART principles. The idea is using smaller steps to develop intended habits. Going with the previous example, using ‘improving physical activity’ as your specific goal, you can set an initial time frame to 2 months, set a smaller goal for the time frame to ‘going to the gym/working out’ 2-3x a week. You can measure this goal by starting a workout journal that has details of the exercises you’ve done, dates you’ve worked out, etc. Using SMART principles, you can also identify which goals are feasible for your and for your lifestyle.
- Just do. You can set as much goals as you want, plan for it but neglect to actually DO IT. What’s the point of setting goals and planning without putting in the action?
- Stay motivated. Everyone has a different motivation to set the goals they intend to achieve. Ask yourself what motivates you? Alternatively, you can stay motivated by surrounding yourself with a great group of friends and family as your support system. Read up on motivational/inspirational stories online or in books. Or you could also get your best friend, significant other or sister/brother involved in the process. A fun and rewarding way to spend some quality time is an awesome bonus!
These are my Goal Setting Tips for the new year. Feel free to share your comments, questions or suggestions with us below 🙂