Goals vs. Resolutions

We all know that resolutions fail. I’m not a fan of them. There’s nothing holding us accountable to doing for 365 days what we say we’re going to do on day 1, especially just because we think we should be doing those things. Resolutions don’t work.

But goals, goals are something else. Goals, written well, can keep us accountable. Or they can act as north stars, which is how I use them.

Goals help us keep our efforts on track. They make sure that we do the small things we do in order to reach the bigger things that we want to get done.

So I don’t make resolutions, but I do make goals.

My goals, as much as I hate to use the cliched term, are “SMART”. I put numbers on them that can give me a clear yes/no on whether I’ve been able to do what I set out to do.

To be honest, though, I don’t worry too much when I fail to hit a goal. It’s certainly not pleasant. But my goals, as I mentioned earlier, act as north stars. I primarily use them to make sure that I’m constantly making progress towards something I actually care about. I refer back to them throughout the week, and usually at least once a day.

That means that I need to be sure about any goals I set for myself, which means I take my time to make them. I usually draft them a week or two before finalizing them, and let them sit in my mind before “locking them in.”

Then, throughout the year, I’ll track my progress. I use Trello, so I’ll use checklists and colored labels, and I’ll break down my yearly goals into weekly goals, which are further broken down into daily tasks on my TODO list.

For those of you that can keep your resolutions, definitely more power to you. But if you’re like me, being goal-oriented is a better approach and the way to go.

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