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New Years Resolutions and Goal Setting

road sign with the word 'Goals'

It is the time of year when everyone starts looking at their New Year’s resolutions and what they want to improve upon or change for the next coming year.  Comedians frequently make fun of everyone’s New Year’s resolutions because they start out with a bang and ended up fizzling out quickly.

It is no secret that gym memberships skyrocket in January only to go unused for the rest of the year.  Combining New Year’s resolutions with the science of goal setting can make a big difference in whether or not you achieve your resolutions.

Here are some guidelines for setting resolutions for the coming year.


Your resolutions should be very specific and measurable so that you could not only gauge your progress but also know that you are on the right track.  For instance, a resolution to “get fit” does not fit the criteria of being specific or measurable and therefore it is a very elusive goal.  However, a resolution such as to get down to 125 pounds by January 1, 2021, is a resolution that can be measured and you can gauge your progress.  Likewise, a goal to complete a 5K or two completed 5K at a specific time is something that can be measured and for that reason much more likely to be achieved.


Additionally, your resolution should have a time attached to each in order to make the resolution more urgent and precise.  The easiest way is to make the resolutions or goals a calendar year goal.  In other words, you want to complete these achievements within the year 2013.  By making your resolution or goal time-sensitive, your odds of achieving the goal will be much higher.


It is very helpful if you tell your friends or family members what you plan to achieve and what your specific goals are because it commits you to the process.  You’re much less likely to blow off a goal if you have told others that you plan to achieve it.  One helpful thought is to exchange goals with your best friends so you can monitor not only your progress but theirs as well and they can monitor yours.  Having a friend push you can be a very good thing for achieving the life you are seeking.


This is a difficult subject to explain but the purpose is to make goals that are achievable and not ones that are out of reach.  Obviously it is important that you set your goals as high as you possibly can and I advocate that you set your goals such that you are likely able to achieve them with hard work.  In other words, don’t set yourself up for failure when an Olympic athlete may not be able to make the goals that you set for yourself.


Make your goals and resolutions something that is enjoyable and take the time to appreciate the work you’re putting in to achieve your goals and resolutions.  If you have decided to lose 10 pounds, then enjoy the exercise or the diet you may select.  Try new recipes and new restaurants and make the process as fun as possible.

Good luck to you and your family and may 2020 be a spectacular year for you.

Happy New Year from the Baumgartner Law Firm!