Do THIS & You’re 90% More Likely to Achieve Your Goals
So you’ve made a New Year’s resolution tr have a goal and want to keep it. I get it – we often decide to achieve great things and DESPERATELY want to realize them.
Trouble is, reality sets in and all of a sudden we are off-track.
We vow to start again, usually on a Monday, and again we try our best.
Sometimes we finally get the motivation we’ve been looking for and achieve our goal (yay!).
However sometimes all we get is an “opportunity for growth”.
So if you’ve experienced too many “opportunities for growth” maybe this is the time to keep reading and see how you can achieve those goals and resolutions that have been nagging at you for years ;).
Have you already come up with a resolution for 2019? Does it centre around weight loss, working out more or eating better? Maybe it involves spending more time doing something to feed your soul.
Often our goals have to do with mental, physical or emotional health and nearly 100% of the time we choose them because we truly want to realize something new and improved in our lives.
When January 1st comes, we usually choose something that we have had trouble doing in the past, swearing that this time it will be different and we will actually accomplish our goal. We vow to continue on trudging through the difficult times in order to get the end result we want so badly.
It’s a lovely thought and one I hope to help you work through so you can actually accomplish what you set out to this time.
Working toward what we believe will make us better keeps us growing and helps us avoid being stagnant. I am a goal-setter and I love resolutions at any time – I have set numerous goals for myself over the last 25 years. In doing this, I have discovered a few techniques that have helped me in actually achieving my goals more than anything else ever has. If I hadn’t set and achieved these goals I wouldn’t be where I am today in many cases.
I share these techniques with you so that you can take them on if you are serious about your resolutions/goals. If you are truly committed to achieving the goal or resolution you have set for yourself, these techniques will be a huge motivator to get those goals!
Technique #1: The SMART Principle
I want to talk about a technique that is pretty well known, however if you do not know about it, it’s worth explaining and implementing. It is called the SMART principle and goes as follows…
S for Specific
M for Measurable
A for Attainable
R for Realistic
T for Timed
The gist of the SMART technique is that you would take each of the aspects outlined above and implement them in the wording of your goal.
First, the goal must be specific and easy to understand. It should be simple and straightforward, explaining only one goal you want to achieve. So you would want to say something like ‘I will eat a Paleo diet every day for the next 30 days’ instead of ‘I will eat a Paleo diet every day for the next 30 days so I will fit into a size 8 pair of jeans’. The second goal is worded in a way that is too complicated — it actually involves two separate goals. Use the KISS principle for this – Keep It Simple Sunshine!
Then it needs to be measurable in some way. Following a Paleo diet for 30 days is pretty measurable, as it can be measured in knowing that you honestly ate the right paleo approved foods. You may even keep a journal of the food ingested for accountability to yourself or someone else who you’ve asked to hold you accountable.
It truly should be attainable – something that can be attained in a healthy and honest way. It shouldn’t be something so far-fetched that you know in your heart it is nearly impossible to achieve. If I created a goal to be a chemical engineer in six months, it would be extremely far-fetched for me. Also, because I don’t believe it’s possible, I know I wouldn’t likely create it. If I truly wanted to be an engineer, a more achievable goal for me would be a four year plan. It’s important to know in your heart that you can actually achieve the goal with discipline, hard work and perseverance. Believing in the possibility is one of the most important aspects to any goal.
It gets to be risky so that you are not just looking at achieving a goal that is too easy. Sure I can set up a goal to lose 2 pounds in a month however this is not really a stretch for me. It’s important to challenge yourself and work toward something you REALLY want. At the beginning of 2018 I wanted to write more so I set a risky goal involving journaling for 30min every day. I knew that for me to set aside that amount of time was a risk because I could easily get caught up doing other things. To some people this might not be a risk at all, however for me it was perfect. Only you know what is truly a risky and worthwhile goal for YOU.
Lastly, it has to be timed, or accomplished in a certain timeframe. If we go back to the ‘eating paleo’ goal from above, you can see it is very measurable because it is a 30 day long goal. Setting a time frame for the goal is important so that you know when it is complete. You can always continue on with the same habits once your goal is accomplished, however working toward a certain number is very helpful (especially when a goal is difficult for you).
So now you know a little bit more about how to set up a goal through the SMART principle. I will implement this by using each of these in my goal statement below.
I’m going to use an example of one of my goals from last year, which was to write 10 blog posts by May 1st 2018. First of all, I put my goal in writing and I worded it this way to go along with the SMART principle: “On or before May 1st 2018 I have posted 10 blog posts on Medium.com.” By saying it this way, I had the ability to accomplish the goal before that date and it was also very clear what I wanted to achieve.
So choose a goal that you want to achieve and write it down using the SMART technique. After writing out your goal, post it somewhere you will see it every day (I posted mine on the bathroom mirror, in a few places I did most of my writing and as a screensaver on my phone).
Once you do this, you then get to develop a risk and reward around your goal!
Technique #2: Risk & Reward
This has been an amazing tool for me to achieve my goals and it excites me to share it with you! I used this over the last year to achieve some pretty risky goals and I am sure that it can help you achieve what you want to achieve in 2019.
The reward is basically anything positive you will get once you have achieved your goal.
There are may ways you can reward yourself for a job well done — here are a few suggestions that people in my life have used. A friend of mine got to purchase 2 premium tickets to a specific concert if she achieved her goal. Another friend got to spend $1000 on a tailored suit. My husband had a reward of a Boston Bruins hockey jersey if he achieved his goal. One other person I know purchased a spa day for herself and another got 10 personal training sessions when he achieved his goal.
I adore Lululemon and beautiful gowns so usually my reward centers around purchasing one of these two things ;).
Choose something that makes you really happy. Find something that motivates you enough so that every time you think about getting it, it makes you smile and helps you continue pushing forward.
A risk associated with your goal is anything negative that will happen if you do not achieve it.
I find the risk to be extremely motivating in my life and many friends who have taken this on feel the same way. The trick to the risk is to make it something that you REALLY would NOT want to do.
I had a friend who had a reward of $150 spa gift certificate to spend on herself and her risk was giving that $150 spa gift certificate to her ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend if she did not achieve her goal. Another friend of mine put a risk on her goal and decided that she would not get to drive her car for one week if she did not achieve it. Another one could not use his phone and laptop for week if he did not realize his goal.
You can choose anything you want, but make sure it’s something that is going to cause you pain. The reason you do this is because the more pain it is going to cause, the more you want to avoid it.
This will motivate you to achieve your goal even more. It also helps you get over the hump when you’re having a weak moment.
Also, it is very important to choose someone who will hold you accountable.
When my friend bought the $150 gift certificate she gave it to a friend and made her friend promise not to give it back to her unless she achieved her goal. She put it in a stamped envelope with her ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend’s address on it and told her friend that she absolutely had to mail it if she did not achieve her goal. In case you’re wondering, she did realize her goal and got to spend $150 on herself :).
My husband also had a risk along with his hockey jersey reward. If he did not achieve his goal, he had to purchase a hockey jersey for his friend and get his friend’s name engraved on it. This doesn’t sound so bad except the team that his friend loved was the nemesis of his team so this was a very painful risk for him. As a Boston Bruins fan, the last thing he wanted to do was buy a Montreal Canadiens Jersey for a friend. The rivalry between the teams is huge and it was definitely a motivator for my husband to NOT have to buy this Canadiens jersey. He also achieved his goal and this risk played a big part in keeping his motivation high when he wanted to throw in the towel :).
So there you have it – if you want to achieve your goal or resolution, use the SMART Principle and create a Risk & Reward around it.
Ensure the reward is something you really desire and the risk is something you would absolutely hate to do.
Also find somebody in your life that will hold you 100% accountable. They must be willing to ensure you follow through on the risk if you do not achieve your goal.
Try your best to have everything in place ahead of time (including your accountability buddy) so that that reward is something you will get and the risk is something you will have to do if you don’t achieve your resolution or goal. It’s the best way to make sure you follow through.
It sounds like you’re putting a lot on the line – and you are. I assume that if you have a goal or resolution, it is important for you to achieve it. I write this so that you have the tools to hopefully achieve your goal. I want you to get what you want and if you choose to take them on, these techniques will bring you a few steps closer to that.
As for my 2019 resolution, I have a goal of losing 10 lbs on or before February 15th 2019 and I intend to achieve it. My reward is spending $200 at Lululemon (yay!) and my risk is no laptop for a week (not gonna happen!). My accountability buddy is my husband and he doesn’t let me get away with anything lol.
So what goal are you going to choose?
What will your risk & reward be?
I would love to hear about some of your goals, as well as your risks & rewards, so please feel free to comment and let me know what they are. I am happy to hold you accountable from afar and you’ll also want to make sure you have someone close by to hold you accountable too ;).
Enjoy getting those goals!