2020 is finally ending!

That’s a weird things to say! Normally I don’t really want time to pass by too quickly. But 2020 was a mess!!

And I realize that with the clock chiming midnight it’s not like all our worries or the lingering effects of this pandemic just disappear.

But at least we can sorta hope that the year ahead brings some relief and joy! Never hurts to be optimistic.

One thing we can all do to ensure the year ahead is one we can look forward to, enjoy, and be proud of is to make commitments to ourselves. After all, that’s really all we have control over.

Yes, I’m talking new years resolutions…those things we set when we are full of hope and ambition and then abandon as soon as it gets slightly difficult or uncomfortable.

Want to know how to make the goals stick? I’ve got a secret method just for you!

Ok it’s not a secret and it’s not mine! It’s readily available on the internet and used by experts far and wide. But hey, if you haven’t hear of it, read on!

Want to know exactly how to set goals that you can stick to and that produce real tangible results? Have you heard of SMART goal setting?

(You can say yes, because technically now you have) 🙂

SMART goal setting is a way of taking what we think is a goal (aka an aspiration to lose weight or be happier or feel less stressed) and turn it into a plan (aka what a goal actually is).

Yes, we have a bit of a misconception about what a goal is. A goal is something actionable you can do, step by step, that produces tangible results.

What we think of as a “goal” is actually the outcome we hope a goal produces.

Shifting this in your mind is a key step to ensuring success!

For example, you say you have a goal of losing 10 pounds. But that is actually just the outcome you hope to have. You are wishing for the end result, but not actually planning out exactly how to achieve it. This is why we falter and fall off the wagon. Because we usually make our goals these impossible hopes that we simply can’t live up to when life gets in the way.

A better strategy is to shift life a little bit so that the outcome we desire so much actually happens. This creates a success mindset and a success mindset is a huge boost to self esteem and wellness. In fact, the more realistic we make our goals, the more likely we will be to succeed at so many other things in life.

Why? Because it means we have fundamentally changed how we approach tasks!

Setting SMART goals is about being process and progress oriented instead of perfection oriented.

You know what I am talking about…who of us hasn’t struggled with perfectionism from time to time only to end up in a pit of disappointment because nothing can be perfect ever! And so we give up…

What is a SMART goal?

It is a goal that is Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant*, and Time-bound

Here is an article on exactly how to set a SMART goal.

BONUS: this is an article you can use to help your tween or teen also stick to some of their hopes for the new year. What a great opportunity to a) take a genuine interest in their life b) have a heart to heart conversation about what you both aspire to this year and c) provide genuine, effective support to help them achieve theirs! You are about to become a power team together!!

**There are different versions of the “R” in SMART. Some people say it stands for Realistic (as outlined in the above article), other’s say it stands for Relevant. Both imply that it’s a goal that means something to you and that is achievable enough to pursue.

But if you want extra motivation, you could always say it stands for “reward” and so every time you make progress, you can reward yourself to keep going!