Winter is coming to an end, and Spring is almost here. Despite the weather transition, those New Year’s resolutions made early in the year are still around.
If you’re like many hopefuls, your New Year’s goals may have stalled or never taken flight. And we get it. Life happens, and priorities change. But luckily for everyone, there’s still time in the year to make your resolutions a reality.
Here are four timeless tips to ensure your New Year’s resolutions maintain the progress you intend:
Get an accountability partner
It’s no secret that we’re more powerful in numbers. If your New Year’s resolutions are off to a slow start, it may be in your best interest to seek out an accountability partner. Having someone in your corner to encourage you to achieve your goals can be a game-changing difference.
Accountability partners are aware of your objectives and, by your permission, provide support and the extra push to nudge you closer toward your goals. When selecting someone to serve in this role, be sure to locate an individual you trust. This is a vital characteristic because you’ll need to trust the person that holds you accountable for actualizing goals. Picking someone who isn’t trustworthy can run the risk of future conflict down. After all, no one wants unwanted commentary or to feel like they're being attacked.
After selecting an advocate, be sure to inform them of your goals and what you need to remain motivated. Being vocal about your motivations will only allow your accountability partner to precisely give you the targeted support that inspires you.
Do weekly status updates
On the road to actualization resides progress. To ensure you maintain progress on your goals, you must do check-ins with yourself or an accountability partner. Doing so will give you insight into what’s been accomplished so far. It can also provide insight into your next steps and the action items requiring prioritization to maintain momentum.
Weekly status updates are also an opportunity to see which obstacles impede your success. When working toward goals, people often encounter roadblocks that prevent them from progressing forward. Taking the time to know where you’re at in your progress will highlight issues that need to be addressed, encouraging you to take the necessary steps to find solutions to overcome them.
When conducting weekly status updates, be sure to detail what’s been done, your next tasks and what you need going forward. It’s also a good practice to tie up your status updates with personal reflections.
Reflect on your progress by asking yourself the following questions:
What went well this week?
What was my favorite part of this week?
What can I do differently to improve?
What tactics will I use to accomplish next week's tasks?
Break up big tasks into smaller ones
Sometimes making a resolution a reality can seem like a big undertaking. And some goals may be a huge task requiring lots of time and resources. To prevent burnout, try breaking up large tasks into smaller ones.
Research shows that when we break large tasks down, we see them as more approachable and doable. Splitting up tasks can alleviate worries by providing a starting place to begin. This approach makes us more confident when completing tasks. As a result, the potential to procrastinate or put off tasks decreases.
Here are some tips when breaking down tasks:
See the big picture
Dissect the elements of a task
Observe the order of completing tasks and their subcomponents
Execute a timeline
Commit to yourself
To make an accountability partner and weekly status updates actually work, you must commit yourself to progress. How often have you said you would do something but didn’t because you were too busy or didn’t have the energy? How often have you would change a habit but never started?
If you’re like many people, you’ve been guilty of these dilemmas far too many times. However, don’t fret. Commitment is no easy task, and it takes tremendous work and discipline. To grow deeper in commitment to your New Year’s resolutions, plan for them.
Write your goals down and set deadlines for yourself. Sometimes, the sense of urgency can make a significant impact when executing tasks. Lastly, take away the feeling of choice. Be disciplined by working on one thing and investing all your energy into required tasks.
When you give all of yourself to accomplishing a goal, you will see consistent strides in progress.
Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day. Actualizing our goals takes time, discipline, commitment and work. Use these tips above to maintain the progress you need to cross the finish line.