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Tips for Staying Committed to Your 2017 Goals (Even When You Want to Quit)

January 20, 2017
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Well…It’s that time of the year. We’re counting down the days until the tail end of the first month of 2017. “New Year, New Me”, am I right? If you’re anything like me, you’re feeling what I’m feeling. The newness and novelty of the new year is starting to wear off, and now I’m left here looking up at all of these resolutions and high goals I set for myself for the year.

Why? Because we have a biological inclination to fall back into comfortability, habit and complacency. Humans are creatures of habit, which means our brains work to try and get us back on whatever course we are most used to. So, working towards new goals or a change in lifestyle can turn into a harder task than you once thought, which can be discouraging.

It’s not an uncommon story – in fact, clinical statistics from a study conducted in 2015 indicate that, by the second week of February, over 50% of the population has abandoned at least one of their resolutions or goals. By the end of December, that number jumps to just over 80%.

So, the question I’ve been asking myself is, with the odds seemingly stacked against me, how can I make sure that I see my goals through to fruition, instead of becoming another generalized statistic? How can I make sure that I stay committed to fully achieving my goals, even when I feel like quitting them?

Goal-setting is a hugely beneficial practice for self-improvement, but seeing those goals through is an entirely different endeavor – one that a large portion of the population struggle with.

Achieving your goals is just as important as setting them. After all, if you don’t follow through on the goals you set, what was the point of having taken the time to set them in the first place?

Setting and knocking out goals is a huge part of company culture as a whole too, particularly at an agency like Power Digital.  I turned to some of my highest achieving co-workers for advice on how they plan to reach their full potential in the new year. Here are their tips on staying fully committed to your 2017 goals…even when you feel like quitting.

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Tip #1: Create A Roadmap – Kate Lobel, Director Of PR & Outreach

“It’s important to understand that in order to reach aggressive goals you have to create a road map to getting there, what I like to call a system. In order to reach my goals, I have to create a process that turns into a habit. For example, I’m aiming to secure a set number of placements for Power Digital this year.

With this in mind, I not only know the number of placements I need to place in a month to reach that goal, but I also know the system in place in order to achieve it. For example, every Monday, Wednesday and Friday I slate out one hour of time to pitch only Power Digital. That way I create a habit for myself which helps me commit to hitting my long term goal.”

Tip #2: Make Your Goals Specific – Britney Schroeder, Director Of Content

“Make your goals extremely specific. For example, one of my personal goals is to read one book on professional development per month. To make this goal even more tangible and trackable I’m listing out each book I plan to read each month so I have a clear plan of attack to hit my total goal of 12 books throughout the year. This will help me stay focused and on track!”

Tip #3: Make Your Goals Challenging, But Get Organized – Hans Tveten, Senior Paid Media Account Manager

“First, make sure that your goals are challenging enough and will make an impact on your work, personal life, etc. You have to be fully committed and believe in these goals wholeheartedly and you will be more inclined to accomplish these if they will have measurable benefits.

Related: How to Talk to Your Boss About Your Career Path

Organization is key to goal setting, so make sure that you have a roadmap with benchmarks you can evaluate along the way to track your progress. Try to break down each goal into small steps that you can work on consistently, slow and steady is a great strategy and will help you avoid along the way.

Take the time to set specific, measurable, attainable and time-specific (SMART) goals. Write your goals down, review on a weekly basis and make yourself accountable.”

Tip #4: Be Invested In Your Own Success – Grayson Lafrenz, CEO & Co-Founder

“Commit to it.  I believe that ‘less is more’ when it comes to annual goals.  I have learned to only set goals that I fully believe in, have a burning passion to achieve and am 100% committed to nailing.

Over the years, I have found that when I’m setting the goal, I know if I will hit it or not.  For example, “go to the gym 3 times per week” I know I will not hit this, so I don’t set it as a goal anymore (I used to before I wised up).

I set goals that hit these 3 criteria:

  1. I truly believe in them
  2. I have a deep desire to achieve them
  3. I am fully and personally committed to them

Once I do, I put my head down and simply make the decision to not let anything stop me from getting what I want. Holding myself accountable comes down to reviewing these goals daily (I put them in my calendar), setting milestones to complete each (I also put this on my calendar), and holding myself fully accountable to hitting those milestones.

Related: Certifications Every Aspiring Digital Marketer Should Have Under Their Belt

Sometimes this means pulling an all-nighter or working all weekend to get caught up.  I really believe that if you can’t follow this process and hit your goals you either A) don’t care enough about the goals in the first place, which is a problem, or B) are not reliable to yourself and what is most important to you!”

Whether your goals are professional, personal or a combination of the two, keeping these tips in mind and putting them into action where applicable will help you get to where you want to go.

Set goals that you’re passionate about, create an organized game-plan for yourself for getting there, and hold yourself accountable for knocking those goals down! You had the idea to set those goals in the first place – so make sure you don’t sell yourself short.

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