Motives for a Happy New Year

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Getting caught up in the New Year hype and personal goal setting is fast approaching! Our mailboxes will soon be filled with media campaigns toward purchasing packages to lose weight in 30 days or acquiring that dream vacation with discount airlines specials. Everyone wants to assure success in 2016, so we are pressured to believe that the trick is to use our spending power in order to commit to our proclaimed new goals. However, there is another way to prepare for success in your future. The mission of these mass messages is to redirect your focus from failures to the future. It’s an easy way to distract from the most important step of setting new goals: reflecting on the past mistakes in order to avoid repeating them. The idea of insanity is to repeat an action and expect different results. If we wonder why our personal goals are not being met, it may be due to our inability to address the failures of our actions along the way and change.

How to Redirect Personal Goals

The normal routine may be to set up a new vision for 2016 based on past experiences. You may take the time to reflect on past mistakes and tell yourself, “I failed at that goal, so I’m going to try again.” But a stronger approach may be sitting yourself down for a moment of true reflection on your decision-making process and the actions that follow. This is how you thoroughly assess why in fact you failed to reach the goals you set for the past year. Here are a few questions to jumpstart the review: ● What goals were on your list for 2015 that you felt missed the mark? ● What distractions can you recognize were in the way of your ability to accomplish these goals? How were these distractions successful? ● How much time did you dedicate to achieving these goals? Break down the goals individually and calculate how many hours a week you made the effort. Evaluate. Did you really try your best? ● Did you have any accountability set in place for each goal? ● Did you break down your goals between short term (3-6 months) and long term (6-12 months or longer)?

Once you get through this step, you may experience a series of uncomfortable thoughts, which highlight why you were unable to accomplish some personal goals. If you’ve realized that maybe your goals were not as important as you originally thought, it’s okay to change your focus. Allow time to reflect on what did not work and redirect your actions toward the goals that best align with your personal vision. If you’re unsure of how to identify the goals that make sense for you, take inventory of your time and see what activities you actually make time for throughout the week. These activities might guide you to create new goals. For an additional assessment on recognizing what matters in your life, take a moment to read the last post on Intentional Gratitude. The activities or moments of gratitude may also shed light on where in fact you need to shift your attention considering a new direction for your life.

Outcomes of a Dedicated Goal Setter

Reflecting on your failures doesn’t have to be a self-sabotaging activity. It can instead to lead to a sense of liberation from possible activities that left you mentally and emotionally drained, or events that seem to steal time from the activities you really want to focus on. The challenge is to address those failures, become cognizant of the habits or actions that keep distracting you, and put effort toward replacing those with new motives. You’d be surprised to know that having clarity on your own behaviors and vision can provide a more rewarding experience meant for a happier new year in 2016!