This month perhaps you and countless of others around the globe will take part in an annual event marking the New Year. In addition to the countdown and singing Auld Lang Syne, you may find yourself creating a “New to Do” list, better known as the infamous New Year’s Resolution.
In my early twenties, I can recall making my first New Year’s Resolution. It was December 31st, and I was bringing in the New Year with some friends. We were all having a great time and the question came up “what is your new year’s resolution?” That question hit me like a ton of bricks because I never gave it any thought. This was a new concept. When it was my turn to share, I just made it up on the fly. Some of those goals at the time were to exercise, save money and travel. As the clock was winding down we began counting in unison 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! After the celebration I went home thinking about my goals. I awoke the next morning and to my surprise NOTHING HAPPENED! Maybe I need to give this New Year’s resolution thing some more time. Several weeks and months had past and I didn’t reach my goals. I found myself consumed with mixed emotions and feeling frustrated that an entire year was wasted on “wishful thinking.” This process would play out for several years until I decided one day to try a different approach. It began with asking myself a new set of questions: Should goals be made only during New Years or can they made anytime? Revised and adjusted as I go.
You can probably relate or know someone who has had a similar experience. We all have good intentions of accomplishing our goals. How can we better avoid these barriers, stay focused and accomplish whatever we set our mind on? First, get a clear picture of where you want to be and WRITE IT DOWN. If it’s out of sight it’s out of mind. Your goals should be S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely.) Do you see yourself in a new position, volunteering more or running a 5K? Whatever you see yourself doing you must create a big enough WHY? For example, why should I run a 5K? To raise money for charity, get fit, raise awareness, etc. The more reasons you find, the better. Review your goals daily, once in the morning shortly after you awake and before you go to bed.
Last, share your goals with other caring people who support you and your ideas. They will hold you accountable, and check in on your from time to time. It is important to create a support network and receive positive feedback. This will help to keep you motivated and driven to accomplish your ultimate goals.
About the Author:
Kenny Bey is a Certified Instructor for Dale Carnegie. His humor and energy, in addition to his skills, makes him a highly successful trainer and keynote speaker. Prior to joining Dale Carnegie, Kenny served as a teacher and Assistant Principal. He brings experience and leadership training to his current position. Outside of work, Kenny supports the community as a volunteer for raising cancer awareness. Kenny Bey is also, a dedicated father of three, who resides in Silver Spring, Maryland.