How to make things happen this year.
Written by Matt Wegner
Founder and Lead Counselor, Matt Wegner Financial Coaching, www.financialexcellence.net
Well by now, most of us have probably broken our New Year’s resolutions. Truth is, you’re not alone. One study showed that only 12% of resolution makers were able to keep them. So how do you avoid failure with your resolution this year? Here are a few tips to help you achieve your goals.
Write it down. What is the desired end state? You can’t reach a goal if you don’t really know what success looks like. Be specific and add details.
Define the major milestones? What do you need to do to reach the goal? You need to determine what gates you have to hit to stay on track. It’s nice to know you want to reach the top of the mountain but you won’t get there in one step. Determine what important events will allow you to proceed onward.
What are the minor accomplishments necessary to reach the milestones? You don’t just wake up and find out you’ve lost 45 pounds. Figure out what small targets you need to hit to keep you on track for your goal. For instance, set a goal of losing one pound per week to reach the major milestones of four pounds per month to stay on track in losing 45 pounds in one year.
Put it on a timeline. Start with the end date and plan backward to today to determine when each step should start and end. You may discover your original target date was unrealistic or you need to make some major changes to the plan in order to reach the goal on time.
Plan out the details. Determine what you need to do to meet the daily steps on time. This is often the missing link. It’s easy to say what you want and when you want it. The difficult thing is to identify the specific behaviors that will result in accomplishing each step by the time it needs to be done. What do you need to do daily to develop weekly habits that get monthly results and move you toward your goal? Maybe you need to eat out one less time per week to save a certain amount of money per year. Maybe you need to take in a lunch every day to save a specified amount of money per month. Maybe you need to walk for 20 minutes a day to help lose 2 pounds per week. Be specific. Very few goals are reached overnight. Most resolutions are related to changing a lifetime of behavioral issues. Expect to take time to reach the goal, but also expect to do something daily to keep you moving toward the summit.
– Matt Wegner