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"People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily."     - Zig Ziglar 

Why New Year's Resolutions Fail and How to Set Goals that lead to Success

Posted by Cindy Dobroskay on Wednesday, March 28, 2012 Under: Motivation
Did you make a New Year’s Resolution this year?
Are you still succeeding at your resolution?

A resolution study found that while 52% of participants were confident of success with their resolution goals, only 12% actually achieved their goals. That means 88% of resolutions fail. 

Another study in 2007 showed that men achieved their goal 22% more often when they engaged in goal setting, (a system where small measurable goals are being set; such as, a pound a week, instead of saying "lose weight"), while women succeeded 10% more when they made their goals public and got support from their friends. 

Why do people give up so quickly on most New Year's Resolutions?
Most often they are not specific; they have no strategy for achieving them; they are too big, overwhelming,or unrealistic; people expect to achieve too much with too little effort; and lack of planning.

"goals that are not written down are just wishes ... "
 
What do you want to accomplish? 
How are you going to achieve success?

A key part of building self-motivation is to start setting strong goals. These give you focus, a clear sense of direction, and the self-confidence that comes from recognizing your own achievement.

The process of setting goals helps you choose where you want to go in life. By knowing precisely what you want to achieve, you know where you have to concentrate your efforts. You'll also quickly spot the distractions that can, so easily, lead you astray.  Once you have set your long term goals, set smaller goals that you need to complete if you are to successfully reach your long term goal.  Why short-term goals? 

We need to develop a routine, a method of making sure it happens. That takes consistency.
 
Starting small but doing something everyday is sometimes easier than trying to go all out right away. It keeps your goal in mind, but helps you adjust your schedule bit by bit so it doesn’t become overwhelming. Getting overwhelmed is the start to the end, which is not what we want.

A useful way of making goals more powerful is to use the SMART mnemonic. While there are plenty of variants, SMART usually stands for:
S - Specific 
M - Measurable 
A - Attainable 
R - Relevant / Realistic
T - Time-bound 

For example, "I will lose 10 pounds over the next 10 weeks, by power walking 45 - 60 minutes 3 to 4 times per week and cutting 500 calories from my daily caloric intake." 

Ask yourself, "Is this measurable? Attainable? Realistic? Time bound?
If a goal fails in any way, re-assess your answers to these questions and adjust, rather than give up. All it takes is a little tweeking to the plan. Perhaps your time frame was too short. Or you didn't anticipate a family reunion with far too many temptations that de-railed your efforts. Pick up your plan and make the necessary adjustments to forge ahead. 

By setting sharp, clearly defined goals, you can measure and take pride in the achievement of those goals. You will also raise your self-confidence as you achieve the goals you've set. Step by step you will reach your long term goals.

What is it you want to accomplish?
Write down your long-term goal using the SMART mnemonic, then short-term goals that will lead you step by step toward your long-term goal. Reward yourself for each small success. Keep your plan where you can see it. Recruit friends or a coach to help keep you motivated and accountable. 

Success can be yours - see it, believe it.
 

In : Motivation 


Tags: goals  "goal setting"  motivation  "self-motivation"  resolution  "new year's resolutions" 

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Cindy Dobroskay I have always had an interest in 'weighty' issues and always enjoy learning something new in the area of health, nutrition and fitness. I love to teach, and help people understand the importance of good health and how our lifestyle contributes to our overall sense of well-being. Whether you are looking for motivation or tips to help you achieve your goals, I hope you enjoy what I have to share with you here.