What?! I’ll bet you’ve been seeing all sorts of goal setting and New Year’s resolutions all over social media for the past couple of weeks. What am I, crazy?! To say that setting goals in the new year is a bad idea. Yep. And the rest of the year too.
Why? Because when you set goals, you limit yourself. You box yourself into that definition – what if you could have achieved MORE? Become an even better version of yourself? You’re also working in a state of under-achievement every step of the way until you hit that goal.
And if you’re setting lofty goals, there is also the chance you may not achieve them for whatever reason. Maybe you injure yourself and don’t finish the marathon you actually showed up to and ran the first 20 miles of. Or maybe you just stop going to the gym because you’re not seeing the results fast enough.
In any case, setting goals is a short term strategy. What we really want when we create our New Year’s resolutions (aka goals), is long lasting change. In order to do that, you need to create new habits and processes.
By not setting specific expectations, you’re always in a state of satisfaction, which in turn builds your confidence and fuels your productivity. Read that again. (Kinda “woo woo” but it’s true.) I spent quite a bit of time pondering this after writing this blog post at about this time last year.
So rather than goals, create intentions. Who do you want to be? What do you want to do? And then back into them with daily activity.
Instead of the popular goal of “I want to lose weight”, set the intention of “I live a healthy lifestyle” and then schedule the habit or process of daily exercise or movement – and weekly meal preparation.
Instead of the resolution of “I want to read more” or “I want to read X number of books this year”, set the intention of “I am a reader” and create time each day to read 20 pages.
By creating daily habits, accomplishing goals is a side effect. And THIS creates real and lasting change.