Now that we have passed the season of “New Year’s Resolutions”, it is time to take 2015 seriously and PLAN to get the best out of it. Now after last week’s bash on resolutions, let me take you into the world of setting goals.
We have all heard of goal setting. Many managers bring that topic up this time of the year and everybody rolls their eyes at the thought of another useless exercise in futility. Students, and others as well, might come across this in their day planners or see something about it on social media and just pass on to the next topic. But what if you could have anything you wanted out of 2015? What if you could magically pick something that you have always wanted (like that winter trip to a hot beach) or recently found out you needed (like a new washer and dryer) and it would magically happen? Okay, what if you could pick those things and instead of magically, you could WORK and make it happen? Well I still have SOME of you reading. Ha ha.
So what is the difference between a resolution and a goal? A resolution frequently ends up being just a wish. It is thinking that something would be nice and then that is about the end of it. A goal has a game plan. Think about this. If you were on a hockey team, it would be nice to win games, wouldn’t it? Most would say so, and I don’t know of any team that sets out to lose. But if all that team had was the concept that they would rather win than lose, then it would likely not have a terrific season. But if they had a goal to, for example, win the division title, and they followed that up with a game plan of what skill sets and work ethic they would have to have in order to play in a competitive fashion, and a style of play that complimented their team’s skill set, plus factored in a way to determine their progress, then they would have a fighting chance of getting to where they want to be at the end of the year.
Our lives are no different. If we mutter under our breath at -30 degrees “Sure would be nice to be in Tahiti right now,” then the words pretty much freeze on the way out and drop to the frozen tundra. If we were to decide, “You know what, next December we are going to Tahiti for a week”, and then developed a game plan, you would be amazed where you might be for Christmas next year. Because after making that promise to yourself, preferably followed up by sharing that with your spouse (who I am sure could handle it) or kids or family or co-workers, you would look up what a week-long trip to Tahiti would be. You would look at the time in front of you and discover that you don’t want to go to Tahiti, but perhaps some closer, warm destination because you had no idea where Tahiti was. But if you still want to go and you discover it is $3,000 for 2 people, and you have 50 weeks before you go, if you managed to save $60 per week, you could go! Then you would plan HOW you would save $60 per week. Take a paper route? Save bottle and birthday money? Trim the budget? Your call, but you will have set a goal, made a game plan and chances are I may have to send you your Christmas card to Tahiti next year.
The same concept can work for whatever your goal is. To be more fit? To spend more time with loved ones? Maybe a monthly date night with the one you love. If you make it specific, develop a plan, work the plan, and adjust where necessary, you can get more out of 2015 than you did out of 2014. You will feel more accomplished, successful, happier; whatever you are looking for. But if you leave the next 365 days to “happenstance” than odds are you will be in the same place next year as you are today. And life is too short not to move forward with it.