“New Year, New Me,” a phrase so popularised it has become a sarcastic trope of our aspirations for the year ahead. We’ve all seen the memes in January, but should we really be mocking those who are trying to improve themselves? As 2020 approaches, many – myself included - will be making resolutions not only for the coming year but for the coming decade. The start of any new year if a great time to evaluate or in the words of Kylie Jenner, a fab time to “realize things”.
So here are my tips on how to successfully set goals for 2020:
1. Be realistic
Are you really going to stop drinking, stop shopping, revise for 2 hours a day and sign up for a marathon? I think not – congrats if you pull it off but that could never be me! For the rest of us mere mortals, it is important to set goals that are achievable. Challenge yourself, but make sure these challenges are attainable. e.g. aim to go to the gym a few times a week instead of every single day.
2. Be Specific
Know what it is that you want to achieve: vague goals are impossible to execute! Instead of ‘I want to save money’, figure out how much money you want to save per month. Instead of ‘I want to get fit’, specify that you will be going for a run 3 times a week. This way you know exactly how to achieve your goal and can put measures in place to achieve it.
3. Be accountable
Tell someone else about the goals that you’ve set. This person will also be committed to the goals you’ve set and can help encourage you when you’re not feeling as motivated. Make sure this person is reliable and can give you unbiased feedback - your fave flakey friend is not ideal for this role.
4. Persevere even if you fail or give up
There may be a week when you only manage to go on one run instead of 3 or maybe none at all. Do not beat yourself up it, you are still progressing, and progress isn’t always linear! Life always gets in the way, and that’s fine too. This is where having an accountability partner will be really helpful.
5. Adjust your goals (where necessary)
Sometimes you realise that what you set out to do isn’t as challenging as you thought; other times, life throws things at you that you didn’t expect. It’s fine to adjust your goals where necessary, this will ensure you stay motivated and keep pushing yourself in a way that is doable and works with what is currently happening in your life. Improvise, adapt, and overcome!
So now you’ve got all the tools to successfully set goals for the coming year, good luck to you all & if you fall short of your aspirations, there’s always a Monday around the corner to start again!