Imagine it’s December 31, a year from now. You are reviewing the past year with a big smile on your face, pleased that so far this has been the best year of your life. Take a moment to savor what made this year so amazing. Was it a fantastic relationship, a career promotion or the start of your own business, enjoying good health or volunteer, spiritual or travel opportunities. Write them down. Savor the feeling. Know that, in fact; you can make those dreams a reality. As a Life Coach, my goal is to inspire you and at the same time hold your feet to the fire to take the action necessary to make this the best year of your life, so far. So what will empower you to succeed, resolutions, goals or habits?
Resolutions, Goals or Habits?
So what will most support you in making those dreams come true?
A resolution is defined as a decision, a promise or a solution. Resolutions can be great but how many times have you broken a promise or a resolution you have made to yourself. Estimates are that four out of five people will break their New Year’s Resolutions and a third will not make it to February. Not very good odds, maybe there is a better way to end up on December 31, next year, realizing that you were able to create the best year of your life, so far. (I keep adding so far, because as far as I can tell there is no reason why our lives should just not keep getting better.)
Goals are where we want to be at the end of the race. Yes, you should have bodacious goals. They are what we aim for and how we often define whether or not we are successful. By now most of us have heard of SMART Goals. SMART Goals are fantastic. By definition, they are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-focused, and Time-bound. Goals are great for telling you where you want to end up, but most of the time we are in the process of getting somewhere not at the beginning or the end. So how do you get there?
The power of focusing on habits was one of my best discoveries. Habits are a regularly repeated behavior pattern, a routine, a custom, a convention or practice. Every morning I get out of bed and brush my teeth. It’s a pattern, a habit, something I do so routinely that I don’t even need to think about it. Also, I’ve added seven minutes of exercise. No, seven minutes isn’t a lot. In fact, some of you may say, seven minutes, it’s so little, why bother, but I don’t have to think about it. Seven minutes goes under my radar for debating whether or not I should do it. So I do it. I don’t have to think about it. I feel better about myself and I am more conscious of taking care of myself the rest of the day as a result.
Resolutions, Goals or Habits?
Putting habits in place, particularly those that at first or small and don’t cause much change in routine can be just what it takes to make your dreams come true in 2017. What habits would suit you well in 2017?
Next Action Step
Get out your pen and paper. Write the ten goals that you would like to achieve that would make the most positive difference in your life. Yes, Write them down. We know that people who write down their goals are significantly more likely to achieve them. Now pick one and think about a habit you can stop or a new habit you can put in place to help make that goal come true. Remember, being persistent, constant action is the key to success.