There’s no denying that New Year’s Resolutions come from a great place.
The idea is to learn from last year’s mistakes, set some real goals, and finally get our lives together.
Yeah, we’ve heard that one before. Why is it that these goals always seem to fall through, and we end up halfway through January swearing that next year will be our year?
For the past three years, I’ve begun every 12-month cycle of the Gregorian calendar with a set of goals, and I can honestly say I haven’t fallen short of them yet.
Here are the secrets I use to stay resolute, along with my own goals for 2018.
Keep Goals Fluid
This is my biggest tip. So many people fall into a cycle of failure because they set rigid – and often unrealistic – goals. Instead of judging your success based on how many items you check off your list, consider the true meaning behind each resolution.
For example, one of my 2017 goals was to achieve mid-level fluency in Spanish. I thought this would help propel me in my career, but it turned out that destiny had some surprises in store. I realized instead that my efforts were better spent perfecting my writing.
Did I achieve my original goal by December 2017? Nope. But I realized the true meaning behind it wasn’t mastery of a language, it was career advancement. And that I did achieve.
Just Do One the First Year
What? Only one resolution? Most people could write a novella with theirs! But as history shows, most of these never get accomplished.
My very first New Year’s Resolution was in 2015 when I dedicated myself to – go ahead and laugh – getting a bigger booty. I was tired of looking like a deflated pancake in jeans, and my current workout routine wasn’t cutting it. I reached out to one of my best friends who had a lot of experience with bodybuilding, and thus began a fitness journey that continues to this day. What started as a simple booty quest transformed my entire body, mind, and life.
So, choose one thing you really want to do, and see it through to the finish. Trust me, it feels much better to fully realize one goal than to half-accomplish 10.
Goals for 2018
I’ll share with you here a few of my goals for 2018. The short/long/fun-goal paradigm was inspired by fellow blogger Meredith Tolleson over at The Southern Source. Try it – it’s much more fun than making a boring old list.
- Short-term goal. This one can be accomplished in a few months. Mine is to take Jacob and myself on a culturally-rich vacation to a place we’ve never visited before. It’s time to get creative and vacay outside of the box!
- Fun goal. This goal is something silly or fun you’ve always wanted to do, but never put the energy into. For me, this is taking a wine-tasting course to learn how to truly appreciate a fine bottle of wine (whenever I get my hands on one).
- Long-term goal. I’m really excited about this one. It’s something that may take most of the year, even a bit longer. My goal is to become professionally certified in French-to-English translation. It’ll be a lot of work, but I look forward to the challenge and the huge reward at the end. I’ve already begun studying to take the DALF C1 (Advanced French Diploma) in March as the first step, so wish me bonne chance.
Now Take the Time to Analyze
I’ll admit, it took me a few days of self-lecturing before I sat down and defined my goals. It’s crazy how adverse our brains can be to actually thinking. But it’s so liberating once you do. All kinds of ideas, opinions, and inspirations come out of a good think session.
If you haven’t had one in a while, take a walk, a shower, a drive – whatever gets you inside your head, and figure out how to make 2018 the year for you.