Staying Accountable in the New Year: 3 Easy Steps to Accomplishing Your Goals

By Catherine Lang-Cline

We are approaching a new year that will have new resolutions, new personal and professional goals and maybe for some, the same resolutions and goals from last year. If you tend to fall into this third category, how do you plan on reaching your goals this year? I’ve found that when you keep your goals all alone in your head, they are not as real and rarely ever reached.

Here are three things you can do to ensure your goals are achieved in 2017:

  1. Find images of what your finished goals will look like. If you aren’t able to envision the final result, you will never obtain it. At Portfolio Creative, we encourage each other to create “dream” or “goal” boards that hang up by each of our desks. Having this visual representation to refer to every day has proven to be successful for our team, even for those initially hesitant to the idea of setting goals through “arts and crafts”. Find images in magazines and online and look at them often. Look at them so often that they start to feel obtainable. You can do this activity with others, like we do at Portfolio Creative, and talk about your dreams and goals together. Which leads to;

  2. Finding the right words. When you set a goal, what is it that you are actually wishing for? When you say that you want to be in better shape, does that mean you want to be more healthy? Does it mean losing weight would make you feel more attractive, and then you would feel more confident about dating? Or are you hoping to simply fight the aging process? If your goal is to travel more, where is it you wish to go? You want to make your business grow, but how? It can’t be done by doing the same thing, so think about what needs to change to make that happen. Choose very specific words to help you spell out what it is that you really want. Once the idea is more concrete, it becomes more real and allows you to create a checklist of steps needed to follow through and get it done. Lastly;

  3. Do the research. What do you need for your checklist to keep the momentum going after making it through the first two steps? Do you need a trainer, a travel agent, or a financial planner? Most people will help you out for free if you are simply inquiring. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Let’s face it, if your goals were easy, you would have reached them by now. Talk with people who are where you want to be. Ask how they did it. What were the steps that they took and what disappointments did they have along the way? Ask someone who has lost a lot of weight what they did about temptation. Ask that Vice-President what it took to get to their level.Then check back with those people or new people for more help. Maybe they would be willing to be your mentor? Talk to people that you really trust and are willing to hold you accountable.

Goals and dreams are only as tangible as we make them. Get past the idea stage and start to make your goals into something you can visualize. Get them into words that make your goals very specific, less vague, and unique to you.

There is no such thing as failure, only learning.

Be ready to understand that what you wish for might be delivered in a different form. The result may be even better then you thought! So get informed, ask for help, and get started. The only thing keeping you from what you are really trying to accomplish is you.