Will you be one of the few who keep your New Year’s resolutions this year? In America, 100 million people make resolutions, while only 10% keep them. Most abandon them after the first week. Have you noticed that gyms are jammed the first few weeks of January and empty by the end of February?

A “resolution” is a firm decision to do or not to do something. Take deliberate steps NOW for success in 2015.

Decide what YOU really want. Be clear on what you want and why you want it. The why is important because if you don’t have a good reason for achieving the goal, you can easily get off-track. Choose goals in 3 major areas of your life: Health, Relationships, and Finances.

Limit your goals. Start small and easy, especially if you have not been successful in reaching your goals in the past. Consider starting with something you already do occasionally but want to do daily. Your self-confidence will grow as you reach it and this will help prepare you to work on future goals. One client’s 2015 resolution is to develop a closer relationship with his young daughter, so his goal is to take his daughter for pancakes the first Saturday of every month.

Spread out your goals. Start working on one in January, then calendar the start date for the next one, i.e., June 15. It takes 21days to form a habit.

Write down your goals and make them “SMART.” SMART is the acronym for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-oriented and Time-bound. “Cholesterol will be less than 180 by May 1.” “E-Book will be published by August 15.” “Family cruise will be enjoyed by November 30.” The date of completion is critical because otherwise your destination becomes “Someday Isle,” which translates into merely wishful thinking. “Someday I’ll do this” and “Someday I’ll do that.”

Post your goals in visible sites around your home. My family posts 3 sets of goals: My Goals, My Husband’s Goals, & Team Goals.

Visualize yourself achieving your goal. The Law of Attraction says that when you focus on something, it will manifest. Have you ever noticed that if you are thinking about buying a red sports car that you see lots of them?

Identify someone to hold you accountable, help you deal with obstacles and celebrate success. You will be 33% more likely to be successful when someone collaborates with you on your progress on a regular basis.

Find your sense of humor! Be willing to laugh at yourself and forgive yourself so you will get back on track when you fall off-course.

Reward yourself! When you achieve your resolution, celebrate with a new golf putter, a massage or a concert.

Happy New Year and much success in keeping your resolutions!

Dr. Susan Murphy is a best-selling author, coach and speaker who specializes in relationships, conflict, leadership and goal-achievement. Dr. Murphy can be reached at [email protected] (760) 674.1615.

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Comments (2)

  • Elizabeth Wickham

    Great article by Susan Murphy. I like her advice to start small and be specific.

    • Dr. Susan Murphy

      Thanks, Elizabeth, for your comment! How super that you’ve shared my advice about resolutions with so many others through your blog and Facebook.


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