Advice / Life

Make your resolutions reality

2014xOver the past few weeks, I have been taking a leadership training. One of the trainers was fond of asking us, “What is the difference between a goal and a New Year’s resolution?” Given that I had the question answered for me many times by that same trainer, I am now asking you.

What is the difference between a goal and a New Year’s resolution?

Go ahead. Think about it. I can wait.

Ready?

A goal is something specific that you can define, measure, and report on. A New Year’s resolution is an idea you have, often while drinking, and promptly forget.

Do you agree? If so, here are some helpful hints for turning your New Year’s resolution into a realistic goal.

1. Be specific. Don’t say “I will lose weight.” Say “I will drop 10 pounds in 6 months.”

2. Be measerable. Don’t say “I will spend more time with my kids.” Say “Starting next week, every Thursday night is movie night.”

3. Be time-sensitive. Don’t say “I will become an avid blogger.” Say “I will write a guest post for VillageQ every 3 months.”

4. Be accountable. Don’t tell yourself “I will put down my phone while having dinner with the kids.” Promise the kids that you will put down the phone and tell them to call you on it when you forget. Even better, reward them for keeping you on track!

Want to talk more about goals and resolutions? Join us tonight for our #vqchat on Twitter at 9 p.m. EST.

Happy New Year!

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4 Comments

  1. Can’t go wrong with guidelines like these…especially #3. Contributing guest posts for VillageQ allows you to practice your skills AND entertain, inform or enlighten our community.

    Thanks, Clare!!

  2. Thank you, Clare!

    One of the things I’ve been thinking about lately – more so thanks to tonight’s VQChat – has been about how you do positive change. After reading Charles Duhigg’s The Power of Habit, I’ve gained an appreciation for the degree to which the habitual drives behavior. I’m trying to couple that with my belief in the intrinsic value of things that are good for us – that I seek to make change in my life for the better, not for the worse, so of course the better will feel better. I’m trying to be mindful of the positive feeling that positive change engenders, and use that, along with some insight about how to capitalize on the power of the habitual.

    But I’m going to be careful about what I resolve to do. Also, one thing at a time, ’til it sticks. Then on to the next. I’m going to try to put the whole shebang in the light Jen Bauer (Adventuresome Moms) said she uses, in tonight’s Twitter chat: “I tend to just assume I can do things.”

    • The same trainer told us that it takes 45 days of consistent repetition to change the neural pathways in your brain and really change a pattern of behavior.

      One at a time. Sage advice.

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