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​New Year’s Resolutions: How To Set Smarter Goals

It’s an age-old tradition to think about fresh starts when it comes to the beginning of a new year, and many of us still set big goals as the clock chimes 12 on December 31st. From exercising more to healthy eating, getting a big DIY project done, or reading more, our goals are as diverse as we are, but many share the same unfortunate fate – we fail to keep them up. Unfortunately, many of us have forgotten about our resolutions by the time February rolls around.

So, how can we do better and work smarter when it comes to resolutions?

One method is using business principles and techniques to manage our goals. First, you want to set a number of clear and measurable resolutions, in the same way you might set goals for your career or business. Remember to keep it manageable – 3 to 5 is plenty! This allows you to pay attention to each and keep them under control. Then plot your resolutions out as projects and manage them. Analyze your resources (including time and money), break them down into milestones, and create a realistic framework for success. This analytical approach is much more likely to be successful than just telling the universe this is the year you get a six-pack! Go back and measure your progress each month to stay on track.

Another way to take on new year’s resolutions is to completely invert them and start celebrating new year’s achievements instead. This way, instead of setting a goal to reach, you come to the end of the month and mark down the achievements you have made. No disappointments, no getting off track, and you’re guaranteed to have plenty of good stuff to look back proudly on come December! This might look something like this:

  • January– I had a great first month at my new job (remote, cool colleagues, high pay, business travel to look forward to) and I’ve already had positive feedback from management!

  • February – I managed to solve a challenging problem for a client, I ate healthy food for most of the month, and I’ve been walking more.

  • March – I started a course to improve my technical skills at work, I read a great new book that has been on my reading list for ages, and I volunteered at a charity event.

See, those small wins quickly stack up! Isn’t that more satisfying than a new year’s resolution that you forget about in a few weeks?

They say you have to eat an elephant one bite at a time and whether you decide to project manage your resolutions or flip them completely on their head, it’s important to celebrate the small victories along the way as well as the big achievements. Here is to a successful and productive 2022!

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