How to avoid the resolution trap

A great resolution without a great plan turns into a great failure. Many of us enter into the new year with the best intentions like learning a new skill, dropping weight, starting a new positive habit or starting a business. And many of us never see these resolutions come to fruition; why? I firmly believe this is because of one of two reasons. One, we have unrealistic time frames or two we are not decided on the action steps that will get us there. Take for example, getting out of debt. If you have $100,000 in debt but have a household income of $60,000 it’s not realistic that the goal will be accomplished by December 2019. What is realistic is getting together an emergency fund and cutting up your credit cards, eating ramen and paying off larger chunks of that debt than ever before, but not in a year (unless you seriously look at increasing your income in that time). As well even if it is realistic, without smaller steps to get you there it’s easy to get discouraged on the way without checkpoints. There are two thing that you can do today to help to turn these resolutions into solidified goals.

1. Recognize that it doesn’t all have to be done in a year

Bill Gates was quoted saying “We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten. Don’t let yourself be lulled into inaction.” Some goals will take longer than that, and that’s okay. Before Steve Jobs and his friend Steve Wozniak made the Apple I in 1976 Wozniak had spent his entire childhood working with computer, realistically close to 10,000 hours worth of time. When goal setting remember that you are playing the long game, don’t get suck into the “it has to be done in a year” trap.

2. Set up checkpoints

All good goals have baby steps. Reaching each new step builds confidence and traction. If you’re starting a  business then figure each step into the plan. Getting the business license, create a draft for the product, writing out names of businesses and individuals you want to network with and setting up those phone calls and meetings. Put a date for each step and remember that as you hit those smaller pieces you are making progress to that bigger goal.

My wife and I have been doing these two things for the past few years and it has made an incredible difference in planning for and reaching our goals.

You can turn your resolutions into concrete goals with these two steps and make 2019 your best year yet and never fall into the resolution trap of a decision without a plan again.

If this post gave you some practical tips for 2019 and think it would do the same for your friends and family please share with them today!

Derek JohnsonComment