A recent study found that nearly 50% of Americans make New Years resolutions but fewer than 10% keep them after a couple months.  More often than not, we set ourselves up for failure by making unrealistic goals and putting them on unrealistic timelines.

For many people, the fresh start of the New Year and the idea of a New Year resolution can be empowering and propel them to make a change. However, for others it can invoke feelings of shame, insecurity and anxiety, all of which can serve to negatively impact one’s physical and mental health.

Hopefully, I am not the first person to tell you that if you are happy and healthy in th body and life you have, continue to rock your body and your life!

Conversely, there is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to make a change in your life. There is no shame in wanting to get in shape, gain strength or loose weight. There is no shame in wanting more out of your life.

Steps to setting a successful goal….

There is a deeply human desire to set goals; whether that is to get more exercise, sleep more, eat better or save more money. However, we often set ourselves up for failure by setting goals without a clear understanding of how we are going to reach those goals. Without a defined plan, the goals can seem unmanageable, our motivation can drop and our goals can seem unattainable. Below, I have some tried and true ways for you to set, manage and reach any goal (anytime of year).

How to set yourself up to successfully reach any goal…

Instead of setting just one big goal, set a series of smaller goals that will work like stepping stones to reach your big goal:  For instance, if you want to be able to run a 5K in 2021, start with the goal of being able to run 1/2 mile without stopping and then slowly increase your distance until you can finish that 5K. Small goals equal more wins and more wins will keep you motivated. I encourage you to celebrate each of these smaller goals in a big way too.

If you want to start exercising regularly, don’t start with a 7-day a week goal. Instead, start with a more manageable 2-3 days a week. Working out for 7 days in a row for a week, burning yourself out and then falling off the wagon on day 8 will not serve you as well as consistently working out 3 days a week for the next 12 months.

Find a buddy or accountability partner:  This can either be someone that has a similar goal that you can work towards together, or someone who might be working on a totally different goal, but you use regular check-ins to keep each other accountable.

Workout buddies are awesome and have kept me motivated and reaching goals for years. If you have a goal to get more sleep, and your best friend has a goal to drink more water, setup a daily check-in text or call to make sure you are both staying on track.

Give yourself rewards: I love a good opportunity to splurge on myself, especially when I have been working hard on a goal. For me, rewards double the win when it comes to goals. Not only do you get the joy that comes with reaching a goal, but you also gain an additional reward, which is really just icing on the cake!

After constantly reaching your exercise goals for a month, give yourself the reward of a new fun piece of workout clothing. If your goal is to drink more water, reward yourself with a new water bottle after being consistent for a particular amount of time.

I hope this helps you set and reach towards your goals (no matter what time of year). If there is anything I can do to help you on your goal journey please let me know. I am happy to to help!