How to Start your Goals Today!

By: Megan Jones

Can you believe we are 2/3 through the year? This year has flown by for me and I cannot believe how fast it is coming to a close. As I was doing my summer cleaning and I came across my “2022 Resolutions” list. Unfortunately, it has been another year that I did not follow through on all my set-out goals. Now there are two ways to look at this, that had I failed, or that I need to re-evaluate and adjust my mindset. I am choosing to opt for the latter. How? Today, let’s talk about goal setting and how to maintain your goals and resolutions you set out in 2022. Here is how to start your goals today!

Why is Goal Setting Important and Why is it Hard to Keep?

Goal setting is important because it teaches you to keep growing. It lends the opportunity to expand your skillset and mindset beyond what you thought was possible. Creating a professional, academic, personal, or spiritual goal helps you reflect on where you want to grow as a person and set forth a plan to achieve that goal.

However, at the beginning of the year we may feel overly zealous and ambitious about what we can set out to do. My 2022 resolution list is 15 goals long. That is more than a goal a month, and that is a lot to achieve in a year. Yes, I would have loved to achieve this, but as we sit here in early August, I can’t say that I have achieved all of them…not even close!

Yet, I did begin to create and achieve some of my 2022 goals, and the year isn’t over with so even if you haven’t set out to achieve your goals, there is still time and here’s how.

How to Start Your Goals Today

If you created a resolution list or work goals look back at the list. What have you accomplished? Even if it was the first step. Like many of us, this was my year to get in the gym. I did the first step in signing up for the membership, but there have been weeks or months that my attendance was lackluster at best. But I took the first step. Look at your goals, are there any that you started but have yet to complete? Additionally, if your resolution list is as long as mine, consider cutting it down and focusing in 3 to 5 goals.

If you did not create a list, take the time to reflect and think about, what would you like to say you accomplished this year?

Start and Keep Small

Now you may feel ambitious and that you can keep up a rigorous goal, but life has infinite external factors that can inhibit you reaching that goal. Now I am not saying this as a deterrent, but it is the unfortunate truth. I did pay for a gym membership, but my goal was to go to the gym 5 days a week and looking back that was going from 0 to 100. I re-evaluated and modified my goal to being active 4 times a week for at least 30 minutes.

You can do this too. Take the time to consider your goals, and what you have started, then consider the time in the year you have left. Create a manageable goal, that you are more likely to maintain. If you want to exercise more, try reframing how many days you want to go or the type of exercise. Additionally, if you want to read more, consider how many books you want to read. If you want to cook more, how many meals are you currently making and can you expand?

Broaden Your Parameters

If you broaden your parameters, it creates the opportunity to complete your goals. Personally, I changed to my goal of going to the gym fives a week to at least 30 minutes of physical exercise 4 days a week. This can be a walk on my lunch break, a hike, a yoga class or working out at the gym. By broadening your parameters of your goal, it allows you the flexibility while still completing my goal of being more active than I was last year.

If you set a goal of reading more books, consider listening to audiobooks on your commute to work to help you accomplish it. Moreover, if you wanted to cook more, consider trying a meal prep program, so you can try a new recipe without spending as much time at the grocery store. If your goal was to be fluent in a language, consider getting a calendar with a new word of the day so that you are still actively learning each day.

Build Your Habits

Now that you have reflected, and decided what goals you are actively going to try to complete, create a plan in action. Yes, we may have fallen off our initial plan, but now we have the opportunity to finish out the year strong. It takes 66 days to build a habit. Start today!

Again, if you want to be more active, take a walk on your lunch break, or listen to a meeting while on a walk. On the weekends, maybe try a small hike before starting your day. If you want to read more, see where you can fit that into your schedule. If you watch an hour of TV, cut that hour in half, and spend 30 minutes of it reading. Additionally, if you want to cook more or try new recipes, take the current number of days you cook and try for one more day, then each month ramp it up one more.

You can do this, look at your schedule and begin to see where you can create change and then begin to build your habits.

Goals can be difficult to create, maintain, and complete but you can do this. Let this be your motivation to pick your goals back up again and finish out your year strong!

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