2016 is coming to a close. If you're like many, you may use some down time during the holidays to reflect upon the previous year and look forward to the next. This is the time that "New Years Resolutions" are made. You know, those things that no one sticks with past January.
There is such a negative stigma around annual resolutions that people forego setting goals altogether for fear that they will fail or quit.
Allow me to break down how to set goals and hold to them all year long. Get out a pad and pen, or open a new document on your computer. Let's get started:
Set goals. No kidding, right? As disappointing as it can be to fail or quit on a goal, I assure you that floating through life lost and aimless is a far worse feeling. Take plenty of time, meditate, and challenge yourself. Make these achievable, but if they don't scare you a little, start over.
Create action items. This is important. It's easy to say a goal, but if you don't have habit change and daily steps to gradually get you there, it won't happen. Let's say one goal is "Qualify for Regionals"... Well, how? What's it going to take for you accomplish that? What sacrifices need to be made? What does each day look like?
Revisit your goals at least once per week. Here's the general goal setting "plan" for normal people: 1) Set goals. 2) Write them down. 3) Forget about them until December. 4) Realized literally zero progress was made. 5) Repeat.
Good thing you're not normal people, amiright?
There are several ways to do this. Many people like pen and paper. I really like doing this with spreadsheets because it's neat, easy, and satisfies my OCD tendencies. You'll need to write down your goal along with your action items, then create a box to report how you did that week to move closer to your goal. Here's a sample:
4. Find a person or group to hold you accountable. Your homework before the New Year is to think of at least one person that you admire for whatever reason. Hopefully this person (or people) knows you well enough to give you a kick in the ass when you need it. Create the above spreadsheet in your Google Drive and share it with your person or group. Meet for coffee or call/text once a week to report your goal status to one another. If your goals are mostly CrossFit related, find a coach to walk through these with you. This step may sound difficult. I personally do this and I promise you it is worth it.
If you are willing to do all of these steps, congratulations! You have made the transformation from having wishes to goals. My hope for you is that this time next year you can look back at 2017 with pride as you accomplished or even surpassed your goals.
-Coach Steven Willis