A Resolutions Check-in

by Inda Deleon

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We’re officially one month into the year. Did you set any resolutions or goals for the year? How are those going? Let’s pause today for a quick check-in.

New Year’s resolutions are a tradition for many people. It often sounds something like, “When the new year begins, I’ll…,” or, “In the new year, I’ll stop…,” or, “New year, new me.” There’s a good bit of cultural pressure to set and share resolutions and goals in early January. And many of us expect to be successful as we set them.

Unfortunately, only a small number of people complete resolutions or goals they commit to at the start of the new year. Why? It’s often because they have set either too many goals, goals that are too high, or both. It’s daunting to have to start so many things at once, especially if it is not already a part of your daily life. What typically happens? It becomes overwhelming, or interest is lost. All because the goals were not realistic or attainable all at once.

Making resolutions or goals that are disconnected from your current habits and recent experience often doesn’t work. You must connect what you desire to do and change to evaluation of your experience, or you will end up like many others who make resolutions on New Year’s Day and break them by the end of January.

John Maxwell

John would tell us that in order to set good goals and resolutions for the future, we must be aware of our recent past. He often teaches that experience isn’t the best teacher, but evaluated experience is. What do you know about your past 3-12 months of habits that should be considered as you look at your goals for this year? You can connect that to whatever it is you want to do or change, and you’re on a road to better goals for the year.

Here are some suggestions if you’re feeling off track or disconnected from your initial goals for the year:

  1. Choose a specific goal. A goal that is too vague won’t work. Set out specific perimeters that you want to achieve.
  2. Make a plan. We can’t really do much without a plan, right? Being successful often requires a plan. It gives you an outline to follow.
  3. Consider setting small rewards for each milestone you hit. Celebrating yourself throughout the journey is one way to not only stay disciplined in the plan but also give you an energizing boost to keep going. Motivation won’t always be there, but looking forward to something can help!
  4. Get an accountability partner. It’s no secret that when you share your goal with someone, you are more likely to see it through. Create a plan for checking in and having them hold you accountable for each of the steps.
  5. Give yourself grace. Hating yourself or talking to yourself in a negative way won’t help you make progress or reach your goal any quicker. If you fall, give yourself the space to feel that failure and then get back up. The journey to your success isn’t linear.

If you set some goals this year and feel like you’re already off track, you’re not alone. But you don’t need to wait for a magical January 1st to start again. You don’t even need the first of a month. You just need today. Today you can dig back in. Evaluate your goals, make adjustments where needed, and keep going!

Opening photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

Photo of Inda Deleon

Written by Inda Deleon