Skip The New Year’s Resolutions And Make Goals Instead
This year has been one of the worst for many people, and almost everyone is looking forward to a new year with a fresh start in what they want to accomplish in 2021. It is essential to set goals at the beginning of the year. It brings a renewal of your mind and a fresh, clean look at what you want to accomplish.
Making resolutions can be a good exercise in organizing your thoughts. However, it would help if you had a list of things you want to accomplish. It would be best if you had a strategy to achieve them.
Using a solution-focused strategy can help energize your career plans, whether you are interested in an internal promotion or changing jobs for a new career path.
Using a solution-focused mindset helps you concentrate on taking steps to reach your goals in the present and long term. One of the challenges in achieving your New Year’s goals is that they can be overwhelming. In 2020, there were so many unexpected interruptions that you might be tempted to include them along with new ones for 2021.
Both short-term and long-term goal setting can be somewhat overwhelming if you take a broad sweep at what you want to accomplish, adding to the difficulty in keeping your goals.
The best way to keep focused and on track is to create a list of priorities, which you want to accomplish first. Start by taking your broad goals and narrow them down into step-by-step actions.
One of the serendipities with goal setting is the freedom you receive from an uncluttered mind, free to focus on what interests you. Setting goals gives you a sense of control over what matters most to you.
Career planning starts by having a direction to follow. It cuts down on the feeling of uncertainty, where and how to start. The best career goals are the ones that are clear and simple to follow with action steps.
Apply the SMART goal system to your priorities, and it will help you manage how much progress you are making in the weeks and months to come.
SMART is an acronym that describes how to set your objectives in motion and break down your goals into an easy format to remember. SMART stands for; specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. Here is how the SMART system works. Begin by identifying one of your most desirable goals:
Name a specific goal that clearly states what you want to accomplish. The clearer you are in naming a goal, the better. It helps develop focus and breaks down the chances of losing interest.
Goals that can’t be measured are the most frustrating ones and can fade away. With a job search, you can make goals measurable by keeping track of how many new contacts you make weekly. Make sure you can measure your goal in terms of concrete steps, for example, “I want to increase my networking activities by contacting three new people this week.”
A – Attainable
Goals that lack congruence with the “heart and mind” are most likely to lose momentum. A good example is an attitude of having to do something versus wanting to. Your attitude affects endurance in following through with your goals. Ensure you are personally interested in a specific plan, and it matches what is important to you.
Being realistic is an essential category because it helps you determine how real your goals are in obtaining. Often, goals are never reached because they are unrealistic, both with the time frame you set in obtaining them and without exploring what it takes to accomplish the goals. Some goals will be a fast turnaround, while others will take more time.
For instance, wanting a management promotion may take more time than expected. Rather than give up and lose your career aspirations, get a clear understanding of the steps and time involved.
Do not set yourself up to fail!
Every goal you set needs to have a time constraint attached to it. Setting a deadline is a powerful tool in keeping you on track and emotionally keeping you moving forward. Goals set without a timeframe are ten times easier to drift away than those that have a time attached. For example, “I would like to complete a rough draft of my resume by 3 p.m. on Friday rather than finishing it sometime this weekend.”
Keeping your goals moving forward throughout the year takes thought and perseverance. It is much easier to accomplish goals when you have a plan of action that’s measurable and realistic. Take the pressure off and focus on one step at a time this week towards your goals. Share your success with those around you.
What helps you keep your New Year’s goals? Is it your resolutions or setting step-by-step goals? Comment below.