The new year is upon us, so now is the time to figure out your goals for next year – or, as many like to call them, your New Year’s resolutions.
Why is the new year a great time to reset? It represents a chance to start over with a clean slate. You can take everything you learned from this year and apply it to what you want to do next year. So, I encourage you to make some goals, even if they’re just simple ones. Maybe your resolutions haven’t worked out in the past or you’re not sure what goals you even want to set for next year. While I’m by no means an expert on goal-setting, this is something that I do every year and I’ve learned a simple process that helps me to set better goals, to the point where I actually have fun doing it!
I hope these tips help you, too.
1. Figure out what needs to change
Maybe your life is staying pretty much the same next year with no big moves planned, no trips to take, no job changes. Well, just because your situation isn’t changing doesn’t mean that you have to stay stagnant! Do some self-reflection. What have you learned about yourself this year? Are there some things you need to change? (If the answer is “no,” do some more self-reflection and try again; there are always things we need to work on!) Are there people you want to spend more time with? Do you want to get rid of a bad habit? Or maybe there’s a hobby you’ve always wanted to pick up. Do you have a book idea sitting around in your brain and have been waiting for the right time to put it down on paper? The time is now!
And what about your career? Do you want to advance? Learn new skills? Maybe you want to do something new with your blog.
Or, the ultimate question: if you could have a do-over for this year, what would you do differently? No need for time travel – just make those things part of your goals for 2023!
2. Write it all down
Go for it. Without any rhyme, reason, or order, write down everything you want to do, every goal you have. It doesn’t need to be all thought out and specific yet – just tell yourself what you want to do. The only rule is to make sure it’s legible if you’re handwriting. It helps to number them, too.
3. Refine the goals
Now is where you take each goal and make it SMART. We hear this whole “SMART goal” thing getting thrown around a lot, but only because it’s a great method. Saying “I’m going to run more in 2023” isn’t very helpful, but when you say, “I’m going to run for 30 minutes twice a week in January, 40 minutes in February, three times a week in March,” etc., you have not only a goal, but a plan, too! Remember: SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely. Make sure each goal meets all five of these qualifications before moving forward.
This will take some time, but it’s the most critical step in this process. This is where you really think about your goals and figure out how you’re going to achieve them. Don’t be afraid to do some research to see how other people have accomplished their goals, too!
4. Organise goals by month
Now that each goal is more specific and has a time associated with it (thanks to the “Measurable” and “Timely” factors in SMART), it’s time to pull out your calendar, planner, notebook, or whatever you use most often to write down how you’re going to make strides towards these goals every month. The key here is to make sure you’re not doing too much. You probably don’t want to learn how to teach yoga, write a book, go on a diet, and go on a huge trip in the same month.
That’s why this step is so important. Remember that SMART goals need to be realistic, and to make them that way, you need to give yourself time to achieve them. Plan out your year accordingly.
If you find that you’re putting too much on your plate with so many goals to achieve, try ranking your goals in order of importance. Create some secondary goals that might not be as crucial this year. They’ll be on the back burner for if you have time, but if not, they’ll be your very first goals for next year. And that’s okay! You can’t do everything, especially not in one year.
5. Don’t let your dreams be dreams!
Just do it! (Thank you, Shia LaBeouf.)
Once you have your strategy, it’s time to put it into action. Commit to your plan wholeheartedly. It’s a brand new year – you can do it! Don’t make all of these wonderful goals only to leave them gathering dust.
Even if you don’t accomplish everything, the important part is in the striving. Even just passing one milestone is a victory! Go into 2023 with hope and drive. You can do this – you just have to commit and go for it.
What are some of your goals for next year? I’d love to hear them!
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When you write as much as I do, you have to take frequent breaks from sitting. A standing desk (not a whole desk, but a mini desk that will sit on top of my current desk with my laptop, keyboard, and mouse and extend upward) will allow me to continue working while maintaining that good blood flow to my brain. Thank you so much for your support that allows me to keep producing free content. God bless you! ♥️ E.J.Donate