The beginning of the year is my favorite time to plan for the future. As we transition into winter and the days grow colder, we tend to instinctually draw inwards. It is not a coincidence that so many people set New Year’s Resolutions, because a new calendar year is a great opportunity to mark the beginning of a new chapter.
While helpful in theory, “Resolutions” are not always an effective way of manifesting success. Resolutions tend to be open-ended ideas without systems of accountability, which makes them hard to measure, evaluate, and maintain. Many people find themselves falling off the wagon, or simply abandoning their resolutions only a few months into the New Year.
But where Resolutions fall short, Goal Setting shines. Like a roadmap, effective goals will not only guide you to your destination, but help you to navigate all of the twists and turns along the way. Through SwimRVA Health & Wellness, we offer a multi-faceted selection of programs designed to build your physical, emotional, social, and intellectual health in a supportive, goal-oriented environment.
My Favorite Tips for setting Effective Goals
- First, create a space to record your goals. This can be a notebook, journal, poster board or whatever format works best for you. What matters is that you can revisit these goals throughout the year and track your progress.
- Start by reflecting on where you are now and where you want to be three months from now, six months from now, and one year from now.
- Avoid comparing yourself and your goals to other people. While it can be helpful to draw inspiration from your peers, remember that each of us is on an individual journey.
- Separate your goals into a few categories, for example: Fitness Goals, Financial Goals, Relationship Goals, Educational Goals, etc.
- Choose goals that are SMART – meaning they are:
- Specific: clear and concise about what you want to achieve
- Measurable: define your idea of success in a way that is quantifiable
- Attainable: realistic based on the skills and resources your currently have
- Relevant: aligns with your purpose, centered on you, not built on comparison to others
- Timely: has a date-specific deadline
- Prioritize revisiting your goals throughout the year, and especially if you start feeling lost, hopeless, or doubting your progress.
- Celebrate your victories (no matter how small) and don’t sweat your “failures”. You don’t need permission from anyone to be proud of yourself and your accomplishments.
Goal Setting can be a rewarding practice in reflecting on the past, building priorities for the future, and creating a system of self-accountability. By recording your progress over time, you will build a story of personal success to revisit and reflect upon for years to come.
If you are interested in Goal Setting but don’t know where to start, a Wellness Consultation is a great opportunity. During our session we will assess where you are, and map a path for your future success. Learn about what Wellness classes SwimRVA has to offer that are ideal for your fitness level.
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