Setting Goals That Can Be Achieved

05 Jan

Well, it’s that time of year where millions of people around the world will make New Years resolutions that they will never ever keep. I just read somewhere that most Americans do not stick to their New Years goals past the 5th of January! That’s disgraceful! We can definitely do better than that! How does one go about keeping their resolutions and goals in general?

Realistic vs. Unrealistic

The main factor that I think effects whether or not someone keeps their goals is whether or not the goal is realistic and can be achieved. By this I mean, “Is it something that I can do and have the motivation to do?”. People fail to carry through on their resolutions because they make these over-the-top goals. Once they actually start putting in the work to meet their goals they find that it’s gonna take a lot more work than they thought, get discouraged, and eventually give up.

Let’s Break It Down

For example, let’s say your goal is to lose some excess weight and get in shape this new year. That’s a great idea, but it’s not a great goal by itself and here’s why:
1. It’s too vague. You need concrete benchmarks to measure progress by. (I want to have lost 40 pounds this year and be able to bench-press 200 pounds.)
2. You need multiple deadlines between now and the end of the year to keep your motivation up. (I want to have lost 10 pounds by March and be able to bench-press 100 pounds.)
3. Give yourself a built-in plan upfront by setting your expectations for the time investment right off the bat. (I will go to the gym on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays for an hour before work. If I miss a day for some reason I will do 30 minutes of cardio at home on Saturday.)

Put It All Together

All of these ideas are important to making realistic, obtainable goals that won’t be dropped after 5 days. The most important thing you can do for yourself is to write the goal down and then tell everyone who will listen about your plans. Make yourself accountable to others and you will find it harder to drop the goal. Take the first step and write your goal/s for the new year in the comments below! That’s it for today guys! Have a Happy New Year!


Posted by on January 5, 2011 in Motivational


Tags: , ,

2 responses to “Setting Goals That Can Be Achieved

  1. PGY1

    January 9, 2011 at 11:56 pm

    From one of my new favorite blogs, NCBI ROFL: “[New Year’s] resolvers reported higher rates of success than nonresolvers.”

    (Glad to hear you had a great trip and wish you the best in finding the right lab!)


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