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How To Stop Making New Years Resolutions That Don’t Last

How To Stop Making New Years Resolutions That Don’t Last
Are your new years resolutions on auto pilot? Meaning, are they in a set-it and forget-it mode? Stop setting resolutions that don't last and F.O.C.I.S. on setting GOALS that  move the needle in 2016!
First off, let me say welcome to the New Year! 
There is something about the word “New” that always intrigues me.  Just saying the word gives me a feeling of empowerment, determination. A sense of conviction. 
When you say the word “NEW", what do you think of?
People relate the start of a NEW year with starting over.  Why?  Because it feels like we are crossing the chasm and entering into a new era.
We can forgive those aggressions against us.  We can forget about the uncompleted tasks or we feel a sense of accomplishment for those tasks achieved.
With the new year, you instantly feel free and in control of your future.


Every year, people began to write their resolutions for the new year.  Some of my resolutions over the years have been, I want to connect more with family.  I want to lose 20 pounds.  I want that job promotion. And for the most part, that IS a step in the right direction. 
I used to write out those resolutions on a 3 x 5 note card.  I would then seal that note card in an envelope and place it in my safe.
Nothing like keeping those resolutions safe and secure, locked away for no one to see.  Including me.
For those first few weeks, I would set out to accomplish those resolutions with no plan in mind.
Now I’m not saying that creating resolutions is completely a bad thing.  It certainly is a step in the right  direction and is better than not resolving to do anything at all.  But locking them in my safe certainly doesn’t help either.
For this reason, I like to use the term “Goals” instead of “resolutions” because goals requires a process of steps to accomplish.  The difference between goals and dreams is ACTION.  It requires daily commitment to obtain that goal.  Resolutions say, “I resolve to do a certain thing sometime this year, if I happen to get around to it."
So how can we plan to resolve our goals?


Everyday that goes by is day that can be spent obtaining the skills and the knowledge to successful accomplish your goals. 
So how do you effectively plan to achieve your goals?
I use simple reminders to keep me focusing on what matters most.  I use the acronym F.O.C.I.S.
  • F - Frequency
  • O - Ownership
  • C - Conviction
  • - Identify
  • S - Seize
This is the main reason why I feel resolutions are bad.  They are often “set it and forget it” oriented and not reviewed throughout the year. 
Locking your goals in a safe to never be seen again is not a good plan toward goal success either. 
Goals need fine tuning and sometimes pruning as you work your way through the steps you’ve identified to accomplish your goals. (See Identify)
Have your goals in a visible place and check them DAILY.  I now take those 3 x 5 note cards and place them on my dresser mirror.  I also use software called Evernote to have my goals readily available for review daily, whether on laptop or mobile device.
Get those goals out in front of you were you can see them daily.  Out of sight is out of mind.
You must take ownership of your goals.  Don’t set goals that overly require others to complete tasks for you.  If your goals involved team success, that is fine but OWN your part of that team and stick to your commitments.
Some have recommended that you post your goals publicly.  This can be a great motivator for some, but I would recommend against it.
Because posting those goals publicly steals the thunder of finally accomplishing those goals and THEN publicly showing that you have.  Don’t steal the thunder before it’s time.
Start each day with CONVICTION.  In order to achieve, you MUST believe in the goals you have set. You must be CONVINCED that you are able to accomplish those goals.  This could also mean, don’t set goals that you know are unacheivable.
Look, I am the first to tell you that we can do all things if we just believe.  But I would never set a goal that I plan to be an astronaut by the end of the year.  Not saying that I couldn’t become one, but that could never happen in a years time.  So be realistic and that will support your conviction.
Identify the steps needed to accomplish the goals you’ve taken ownership of.  Use short term goals for longer term ones and brake them down if you have to. Making short term accomplishments will invigorate you and keep you going for the long haul.  Also, identify and use resources readily available to you. 
I could identify that becoming an astronaut would requirement to have a degree in Astrophysics. So my short term goal would be to 1. Find all that is required to be an astronaut.  2. If a degree is required, enroll in a school to obtain a degree in astrophysics.  You get the point.   
Also, identify resources that are readily available to you. A mentor or family member can be a great resource in helping you to get things done.
Seize the moments when they are available.  Sometime when we put processes in place we feel we must go in order of those steps or we feel something may be missed.  I love the words of Bruce Lee, “Be formless like water”. Don’t be so set on a particular order or steps to those goals.  If the possibility arises to seize the moment, do so and take pride in that early accomplishment.


I challenging you in this NEW year to live each day with conviction and purpose.  The moments we are given, the life we live is a gift and we should make each and every moment of our days count.  We are not promised tomorrow, so how we live our days right here, right now is all that matters.  Leave no one day unchallenged and move the needle in 2016. #MOVETHENEEDLE
I am excited to hear about your goals and accomplishments.  If this post has helped you in anyway, let me know in the comment section below.  If you have unique goal setting techniques you use to stay on track, I would love to hear those as well. 
Evernote: Also available for IOS and Android devices.
Trello: Also available for IOS and Android devices.

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