Making that New Year resolution count this year!

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Claire Dunworth-Warby looks at the importance of deciding upon a resolution that is meaningful to you… and that you’ll have a realistic chance of sticking to this time…

It is amazing how quickly a year whizzes past, and the start of 2014 sets us thinking about making yet another resolution that we are definitely going to keep this time round, we promise ourselves!

In truth, can you recall what the resolution was that you made last year and were so determined to keep?

Well done if you can and you did, but you are in a very small minority indeed. Most of us are doing well if it lasts two weeks, let alone into February!

So, how do we maximise our chances of success?

Firstly, you need to decide on a resolution that matches your real desires; lights up your passion; takes you to a place in your life where you really want to be. If you can come up with a resolution that fulfils these requirements, then you’ll be inspired to do it and motivated to achieve it, whatever obstacles might hinder your route there.

It really is worth spending time getting this part right as it is the key to your success. Start thinking about it before New Year’s Day so that it’s not a hasty decision because you feel you ‘ought’ to make one, or because other people put you under pressure. Other people’s goals for you are not your passion, and do not necessarily inspire and motivate you.

Secondly, think smart! Resolutions need to be clear goals if they’re to be achieved, so, while deciding on yours and committing them to paper to make it more likely that you’ll stick to them, check they match the following SMART criteria:

S is for specific

This means that it needs to be a precisely worded goal that moves you to the point in your life where you want to be, not a vague hope for the future.

M is for measurable

You’ll know you are making progress because you have milestones along the way, charting your success and giving you encouragement to continue on this path. Remember – reward yourself as you reach each milestone!

A is for achievable

The resolution should be within your control to achieve, and not wholly reliant on someone else having to do something to help make it happen.

R is for realistic

It should be achievable with the resources you have available to you. It is, for example, not dependent on you winning the lottery!

T is for timed

This means you need to specify the dates when you are going to achieve your milestones and the end goal. Remember – a goal without a date is nothing more than a dream!

So, take time to reflect, follow the steps above and be ready for success this time round!

Claire Dunworth-Warby of Aspire Associates Coaching is a personal, business and education coach working with individuals and organisations one-to-one, over the phone or online and leading workshops across the UK. She also runs courses on Training the Trainers.

For more information or a free taster session contact her on 01746 218298 or visit aspire-coaching.biz

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