It’s that time of year when many New Year’s resolutions have come and gone. They’re legitimate and well-intentioned, but they too quickly fall by the wayside.
I like the idea, though. Emotionally mature, highly-differentiated people set goals; they make plans. But for many of us, the challenge is in the completion of these.
True change (a.k.a. revolution) is a process, not an event. Here are some thoughts*:
- Get Bold: Set goals that are a true stretch. According to one Penn St. professor, “Lofty goals are correlated more strongly with improved performance than small goals.”
- Narrow Your Focus: Pare down the to-do list. Apparently, we’re far more likely to complete a single, focused goal versus two or three.
- Grab a Pen: Research shows that we’re 50% more likely to complete something if we actually write it down.
- Think In Ranges: A study from The Journal of Consumer Research shows that if we target a range (i.e. increase revenue from 15–20%) versus a flat target, we’re more likely to stick with it.
- Map It Out: No surprise, but creating a plan enhances our chances of goal-attainment. One or two hours spent thinking through the steps to accomplish something can create the mental information to power through.
- Enlist a Friend: Research shows that “when people share weekly progress reports with a friend, their likelihood of success in reaching a goal climbs to 76%.”
- Cue The Immediate Gratification: Give yourself small rewards along the way….a slice of your favorite cake, a Netflix binge. These small rewards can keep us in the game.
And from Ariel Kay, CEO, Parachute, “Break the rule of perfection and focus on progress instead.”
Resolutions might have passed. But it’s never too late for a well-though-out revolution!
*Entrepreneur, January/February 2017, Set Better Goals With Science, p. 49