Setting yourself goals is always a good idea, and we all know the start of a new year is the most popular time to do so. Apparently, 80% of people who make new year’s resolutions are already off track by the first week of February, so we’ve put together a list of Rota’s top tips to help you achieve yours.
When you set your goals, you must know why you are wanting to make this change. Changing a habit or creating a new one can be tough, so make sure you think about why you have set yourself the resolution, and that the idea of achieving it makes you really excited! Now, every time you want to skip that gym class, or spend that money you wanted to save, you need to think of this ‘why’ to keep you on track. When you lack knowing why it’s so important to you, there’s nothing stopping you giving up – so make sure it’s something you really want.
Get fit, save money, read more - probably all goals that sound familiar as these are some of the most common. The problem with these is that they are too vague, and in order to achieve your goals you must be able to measure them. For example, rather than saying your goal is to ‘save money,’ try setting an amount of money you want to save each month. Or, rather than ‘read more,’ make the goal specific, for example, read for 20 minutes twice a week.
Split your goal up into stages and make a plan so that you have a chance to achieve small wins quickly, motivating yourself to keep working towards your end goal. If the end goal seems too far away, you can start to feel like you’re failing and this can cause you to give up. Using small steps allows you to check in with how you’re doing and keep on track. For example, if your resolution is to run a marathon in six months, start by making a schedule for the first month. With every target that you hit, you’ll start to gain in momentum and confidence to reach your end goal!
One of the best ways to get a behaviour to stick is by positively reinforcing that behaviour. This works well with breaking your goal into smaller steps. Once you achieve one of these steps, reward yourself and you’ll have extra incentive to keep going. Set the reward early on and use this as motivation to hit your targets. Perhaps it’s treating yourself to your favourite restaurant or a spa day when you have stuck to your resolution for a month, and then you can plan the next month with another reward at the end.
Telling someone about your resolution will help you to achieve it, perhaps you even have a friend with the same goal. When someone is there to constantly check up on you, you’ll be more likely to stay focused. If you want to read more, why not join a book club, or if you want to run a marathon, find a buddy to go running with. You’ll be less likely to find excuses as to why you should skip training if you have a friend there waiting for you.
Not all resolutions work out, and that’s okay! Don’t beat yourself up if you haven’t managed to reach your goal that you originally set yourself. It’s better to achieve a part of your goal rather than falling off the wagon altogether. Just think about our marathon goal, if you had wanted to get your first under your belt by Easter but you get sick and won’t be fit enough, that’s ok! Just find the next one coming up and set another target.