With 2023 being less than 2 weeks away, you might be starting to think about setting yourself some goals for the new year.

Before you do though, take a moment to think about the goals you set for this year. Did you achieve them? If not, why not?

Often, what we don’t realise is that the problem isn’t that we aren’t capable of sticking to our resolutions. The problem is that we need to do a better job making new year goals that are actionable and achievable. Otherwise, it’s almost like setting yourself up to fail.

If you want to set yourself up for the best chance of success, start with these helpful tips for making better resolutions you can actually stick to:

  1. Make smaller resolutions

If your goal is to lose weight in 2023 (one of the most common goals we hear), instead of setting yourself a huge goal of losing 20kg for the year, set yourself smaller, monthly goals. While it can be helpful to set big-picture goals in the long-term, having a more achievable goal to start with can keep you motivated and on track. You want to start small and see early wins, because this is what encourages long-term consistency.

  1. Get specific with your goals

Your goal must be specific in order for it to be effective. Setting large, vague goals will not motivate you to achieve them. An ineffective goal would be ‘to get healthy’, for example. There are so many ways to get healthy. How do you want to do it? Is it losing weight? Is it to start exercising? Is it to eat a healthier diet? These are all more specific goals, but still too vague. If you want to lose weight, how much weight do you want to lose? Ask yourself exactly what you want to accomplish.

  1. Make sure they are realistic

It must be possible for you to achieve your goals. Setting unachievable, unattainable goals is pointless and you will only set yourself up for failure. Ask yourself how you will accomplish your goal and if it is achievable with your current resources. If not, readjust your goal accordingly.

  1. Give yourself a deadline

Effective goals must have a deadline. This will provide you with the necessary focus and sense of urgency to make it happen. You should also be honest with yourself about what you’re able to accomplish in a given time frame (e.g. a month). If losing 5kg is at the top of your list and you’re willing to make sacrifices in your lifestyle, you will be able to attain that more quickly. And if not? That’s completely fine too – you just need to adjust your expectations so they’re in line with your schedule and commitments.

  1. Write down your goals

People who write down their goals feel a greater sense of accountability and have a much higher chance of accomplishing them. Post your goals on your fridge, write them on the bathroom mirror, or write them down in a journal. You might also be more likely to achieve your resolutions if you make them public. Share your goals with your family and friends or post them on social media.

  1. Check in with yourself regularly

Measuring the progress you are making towards your goals is essential - otherwise how will you know if you are getting closer? Measuring progress helps you stay on track, reach your target dates and continue putting in the effort required to reach the ultimate goal.

Reassessing your goals is also important. You may find your original goal was a little unrealistic or even that achieving it isn’t that important to you. Instead of sticking with it once you find it’s probably not possible, feel free to tweak the goal as you see fit.

Have a go now at setting yourself some effective and realistic goals using these tips and let’s make sure that 2023 is the year that you achieve your goals!