Marketing Blog | Addison Clark | Richmond, VA

smart goals

It's been six months since the sparkly outfits, champagne clinks, and the New York City ball dropping rang in the New Year. And if you made a resolution, you may have forgotten it by now. Don't be so quick to give up on those old promises just yet. This just might be the perfect time to revive them. 

Statistics show that six months after setting a resolution, most people don't keep it — 54% to be exact. The numbers are even more discouraging by the end of the year with only 9% having success in seeing their resolution through. We're just going to say it — these are pretty crappy, hopeless numbers. But perhaps there's another way to look at them. People who bother to set resolutions still have the advantage in reaching their goals over those who never created resolutions in the first place. 

Now let's also remember that the flip side of the six-month percentage above is that 46% of people who make a New Year's resolution are still successful in keeping it. While it's true that over half of those ditch theirs halfway through the year, it's equally true that close to half of all resolution setters are still on track to reach their goals by mid-year. So, kudos to those who created one. You're still in the game. 

Before you get too big for your britches, consider why you may or may not have stuck with your New Year's resolutions thus far. There's a good chance it's because they're not the right resolutions. 

Ask yourself these three questions:

  • Did you create your resolution based on what someone else, or society, told you to change?
  • Is your resolution too vague?
  • Did you set a realistic plan for achieving your resolution?

If you responded "no" to any of these questions, then you might want to rework your resolutions. Set yourself up for success by creating SMART goals. SMART is an acronym for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely. Defining these parameters as they pertain to your goal ensures that your objectives are truly achievable, helping you feel more confident than you probably do now six months into your New Year's resolutions. If you haven't heard of this strategy before, allow us to break it down for you.

Specific - The first step in creating an attainable goal is to get specific with how you describe it. Consider it in quantifiable terms and determine your actions to get there. It should include an answer to the popular "w" questions.

Measurable - Evaluate how you will take action to measure your goal. This may take the form of tracking the time it takes you to complete a milestone. 

Attainable - Make sure you can reasonably accomplish your goal within a certain timeframe. Considering how long it will take, potential obstacles, and measurement methods will help you determine the realistic odds of achieving your goal. The more achievable the goal, the more likely you will be to keep working toward it. 

Relevant - Is your goal directly related to a skill or professional development strategy you want to improve? Include any actions you can take to achieve your goal that should directly influence your progress. 

Timely - Consider if your goal is a short-term or long-term goal. From there, you can determine a timeline and set a schedule to meet deadlines and ultimately achieve your end result. 

Try it for yourself! Here's a fill-in-the-blank statement of a SMART goal:
My goal is to [quanitifiable objective] by [timeframe or deadline]. I will accomplish this goal by [what steps you'll take to achieve the goal]. Accomplishing this goal will [result or benefit]. 

Now back to the New Year's resolutions and how you're going to bring them back from the grave. So, six months in and six months to go. You can still accomplish a lot in this time frame. 

To help keep yourself accountable, try scheduling a check-in on your progress toward each resolution. Sometimes new beginnings are forced on us, but even in the middle of the year, we don't have to create them - we get to create them. 

What resolutions might you revisit or create from scratch right now? Don't overthink this, just craft resolutions that feel good to you. You'll give yourself your best shot at success if you set goals that are both doable and meaningful. Most importantly, enjoy this mid-year opportunity to start anew...again. 


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