Did you know most people abandon their New Year resolutions before January is over? Twenty-five percent of people give up by the second week! Yet, many people continue to make the same New Year resolutions year after year. When I found out about this, I decided I would never make New Year resolutions again.
NO TO RESOLUTIONS - YES TO GOALSETTING!
Leadership guru Paul Meyer created the concept of SMART goals during the 1970s, and it is still the standard of goalsetting today. We teach SMART goals at every ILI conference because we believe they are a stepping stone towards growth and achieving vision.
SPECIFIC - Paul Meyer himself stated, “Fuzzy goals will get fuzzy results at best." We must make our goals as specific as possible. Write your goals so a stranger can read and understand them. If they have to ask for an explanation, it needs to be more specific.
MEASURABLE - With measurable goals, you are able to monitor your progress as you pursue them. A measurable goal means including some form of metric you can trace periodically.
ACTIONABLE - Author, Michael Hyatt, states, "Every goal should start with an action verb (e.g., “quit,” “run,” “finish,” “eliminate,” etc.) rather than a to-be verb (e.g., “am,” “be,” “have,” etc.)."
REALISTIC - Goals must be set by faith, but also within reality. It is unwise to set goals so large that they are out of touch with the reality you are working with.
TIME-TARGETED - Every goal needs a deadline, otherwise it is just a wish (or a resolution). Your goals need to have a time when they should be completed and evaluated.
THE TIME IS NOW
The month of December seems to motivate us to look back, while the new year inspires us to think ahead. That is the reason behind New Year's resolutions. But if you are like me and want to go beyond resolutions and set SMART goals, why wait until January? The time is now! Start thinking about goals for 2017 now. Here are a few suggestions:
Buy a Notepad - Yes, let's get oldschool and bust out a pen and paper.
Evaluate - Whether you had resolutions or set goals in 2016 or not, write down your accomplishments and failures. Rejoice in your victories and consider a different course of action for the failures.
Write Your Vision - Goalsetting is a necessary step to achieving your vision, but, if your vision is not clear, your goals won't be either.
Make a List - Jot down the things you need and/or would like to accomplish next year.
Plan a Goalsetting Retreat - Have a goalsetting retreat in January and set aside time to specifically focus on the year ahead.