What Comes After a Resolution: Goal Setting

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As another year ends this is a time when people take the time to reflect on what they’ve accomplished in the past year and make self-assessments. A lot of people take an extra step and participate in an over-hyped, yearly ritual – the New Years Resolution. There’s nothing wrong with a resolution; a resolution is a decision to do or not do something. This is an important starting point for people to make successful changes in their lives, but it is a starting point which means there needs to be action afterwards for the change to happen. Pitfalls come when the vision is made but the path isn’t outlined to follow through. With no path to success the huge goal can seem daunting and if progress isn’t being made, then frustration and despair can start to develop. Once a person reaches this point then giving up usually occurs. The biggest shame of all of this is that there are a lot of people who genuinely want to make substantial changes in their life but don’t know how. When they say to themselves or others that they want to live a better life they’re not simply paying lip service. As soon as a person makes a personal declaration to move their life in a different direction the next, vital process is forming smaller, clearly developed action steps that build off of each other to move the person towards their broader vision – or goal setting.

Follow Through On Your Resolutions

The biggest reason why it’s more beneficial to make the shift towards setting goals after a resolution has been made is that the process of setting goals is more constructive than a simple declaration. When a person sits down to write down the smaller steps he thinks are needed to achieve his broader vision he creates specific, tangible pursuits. It takes the big and breaks down it down into more manageable tasks, which leads to more successes.

If a person wants to get in better physical shape (a resolution) writing down what that means specifically (losing weight, gaining strength, creating more energy,etc), what activities are they going to do, when they are going to do it, how regularly, and how they will measure their progress makes a person more engaged in their pursuit because the pathway to success becomes more clear for them.

A person may say that they want to be in a better financial position by the end of the next year. That’s great! Now, the person should take the next step and map out their path to success. Does a better financial position mean paying off debt, saving money, lowering expenses, or better investing? If the goal is to pay off debt by the end of the year then writing out a budget and creating a payment schedule become the monthly and yearlong goals.

Even the process of setting goals may seem daunting because your mind may want to go everywhere, but once a person spends some time focusing on what their resolution is and what are the most important elements to success, it is all worth it. When a handful of smaller goals is outlined, it makes the unmanageable become very much achievable.

Goals Help You Accomplish Your Resolutions

Goals hold you more accountable. If you’ve written down goals for the year it’s hard to ignore them knowing that you spent time and energy writing them down (especially if you’re keeping them some place where you know you’ll see the list of goals on a regular basis).  If the goals were important enough to commit them to paper and memory, then they have to have some sort of meaning, which makes them harder to hide from. This forces you to make honest self-assessments on your progress. A resolution can easily be forgotten or dismissed if there’s no serious intent to follow through or a strong commitment to it, making it a weak ideal. Goals on the other hand strip away excuses and make a you answer to the most important boss - yourself!

how to set a smart goal

Because goals (both short and long term) are made within specific timeframes, they create a stronger sense of purpose. When a person knows that they’re being held personally accountable not only for what they do but how the will be using their time, they’re more aware of the cost of lost opportunities.

A person with specific fitness goals is less likely to mindlessly skip a workout if they know that by doing so they just loss a day out of their weekly and monthly progress. A resolution does not instill the same focus in a person, because they allow a person a broad amount of time to accomplish the resolution, making it easier to put off. Goals are designed with time and mile markers in mind; you can tell whether your use of time is moving you forward or setting yourself back. This lets a person know that there’s purpose to their actions, that there’s a reason behind everything they’re doing because it’s building towards the next step which is aiding in their overall mission. With this type of mindset, a person can’t help but develop a stronger sense of focus and inner drive, both admirable characteristics.

The Bigger Picture of Goal Setting

Setting goals require reflection, self-analysis, and planning, which are not always fun or pleasant. But what goal setting does is empower a person to change and become a more active participant in their life. We’re obviously big believer of people having goals (whether they be fitness, career, or other personal goals) here at Crossfit Clintonville.

Our gym and business is a result of a commitment made and outlining what goals were needed to make our business and facility a reality. Our mission is transforming lives through fitness. We don’t just accomplish that by an hour-long workout. We believe we owe it to our members by accomplishing our mission by demonstrating how transformation and success occur which, for us, a big part is a person maintaining personal goals and regularly goal setting.