We are half way through 2018. Let that sink in. As cliché as it may sound, many of us feel like it was January 1st, just yesterday. Perhaps you started the year by developing a list of resolutions or intentions – things you wanted to accomplish in 2018. You were “all in.” “This year, I’m finally ready to tackle the ________________ (fill in the blank with whatever you’d previously meant to do). Maybe you chose to reinforce your commitment and applied a goal setting framework like a S.M.A.R.T.* goal setting process, or started journaling or created a vision board to help stay focused. At any rate, you invested time and energy to focus on making this goal happen.
Then, of course, there’s the other part of resolution story we’re familiar with: Of all those people who make a New Year’s resolution, approximately 92% fail. Research conducted at the University of Scranton suggests just 8% of people achieve their New Year’s goals. Here we are … it is now mid-June. The odds that you stuck to your goals, and are maintaining your focus a full six months later is somewhere around less than 44.8% according to Statistic Brain.
So, let’s use the first official Day of Summer, June 21st, as a milestone opportunity to recalibrate. Check in and ask yourself how you are doing. Better yet, what’s changed since January? What are you now willing to re-imagine? And, the big, bold question: How invested are you in beginning again? As you know, there’s no replacement for putting in the work. This week’s post is intended to reignite you.
Use these three tips, to take stock and to help guide your focus for the next week, on how you will spend the next six months.
- Understand your “why” and keep it simple. For all our good intentions, large bucket lists or extreme approaches can be so daunting that we can fail to launch in the first place. Focus on your “why.” Abandon the lofty and commit to make consistent, small steps to work on your intentions every day. The best path to create big change is in adapting small, daily changes in our behavior and actions.
- Evaluate your priorities. What’s changed since you previously committed to your goal? Competing priorities require that we apply a disciplined approach which may feel risky. Try this: For the next 30 days move the ball forward on 2-3 important priorities and then see where you stand. By then, you will have cultivated the habit of evaluating your priorities on a daily basis – and it will likely be a habit you’ll actually want to keep.
- Make it tangible and keep your vision in front of you. Getting your goals out of your head, and on to paper is the best way to ensure you achieve your goals. Journaling helps track your progress and process your thoughts. You may prefer creating a vision board or you could use an app or platform like Pinterest. Be open to experimenting to find what works best for you. Or, just go “old school” and keep a dedicated notebook to help remind you of the work you need to do to achieve your goals.
Remember, two things. You can’t assume that you will “find time” for this most important work. You must make time for it. And, any resolution worth trying is worth trying twice.
*S.M.A.R.T. goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely.