2018 Resolutions - How to Make Them Work
So here we are, at day 4 of 2018.
How are those resolutions going? Have you started? Perhaps you’re like me and you quickly rush to think of some on new years eve and then assume “I'M SO ORGANISED AND FANCY WITH MY RESOLUTIONS”. Then, two days later, the credit card has been used again and you’ve had ice-cream each day on holidays – you feel like a failure already. Now, don’t get me wrong, Katie from Puff and Pantry tells me “caution on the portion” is the way to go and having the occasional ice-cream is fine. But, what about the other things that you can’t really “caution on the portion (I.e. paying off your home loan)”. They’re more the things you genuinely need to have a really solid crack at to make a change.
So, how do you create the goals that stick?
Well, in my humble opinion (and based on some savvy people from a place called Harvard), it’s all down to planning and the old fashion style of WRITING IT DOWN. When we had our event “Shining in the Chaos”, we heard from Narree McIntosh, that she was a big believer in writing goals, plans and having some clear structure and timeframes. We, at Savvy Birds, absolutely agree. Everything we do (Not going to lie, Michelle is very good at keeping me on track with this side of things!), we write it down, we plan, we have thousands of lists - you should see the emails that go back and forth with our ideas at 1am when we can’t sleep.
Whilst some may not find that this works or the whole “who could be bothered?” mantra, the statistics don’t lie. In 1979, a study of Harvard’s MBA program found that 84% of the class had no specific goals at all, 13% had them but hadn’t written them down and 3% had clear, written goals and plans to accomplish them. In 1989, a solid 10 years later, those graduates were interviewed again to look at those who had set their goals. Of the 13% who had written down goals, they were earning on average twice as much as the 84% who had no goals at all. The most amazing part of this study were the findings relating to the 3% who had written clear goals and plans. On average, this group earnt TEN TIMES as much as the other 97% put together. So what does this mean? Perhaps we should we considering really getting on the goal setting bandwagon.
So where do we start? Below are some options to help you start your goal setting for 2018 – and we will be with you the whole way!
1. Heard of a SMART Goal? Nope? Well then, get excited because it’s your new thing! YAY. Read on below for my super easy (maybe a tad wordy) explanations.
Specific - make it super clear - for example, "I plan to walk on Tuesday and Thursday every day this year"
Measurable - Make sure you can track if you're on the right "track" - for example, "I have been walking each Tuesday and Thursday this year"
Achievable - It's got to be possible - for example, if you work on Tuesday and Thursday at your Cabaret bar, you're probably not going to achieve this walking goal. Maybe consider changing days to Monday and Wednesday.
Realistic - It's got to be REAL. For example - don't set yourself a goal to run to Sydney next Monday. How about set a goal to walk to Peel Street next Tuesday first before going to a bigger goal.
Timebound - Set a timeframe. Have you been one of those people that say "diet starts Monday". Well this shouldn't be the case. Get accountable with date, time and timeframe for achieving it. Don't put it off any longer!
2. Treatyoself. Take yourself for a coffee, go to Kmart and get yourself a super-cute $2 bright pink (or black – whatever your style) diary. If you don’t have cash or time for coffee because you’re juggling 17 children, take the kids to the park and get on your iPhone in the “notes” app. Get scribbling on the back of their homework if you like. It’s just about getting it all written down.
3. Sky is the limit. If you have a BIG dream – work out some steps to help you get there. If you want to own a national ice-cream business (I’m noting a theme here, I blame holidays), start to look a short courses or anything to help you get there. Short courses can be at a local community college, University of you have capacity to do that, or even Open Universities Australia. Open Universities Australia (www.open2study.com/courses) has a huge range of FREE – YES FREEEEE – short courses in a range of cool things from climate change to astronomy, innovation to financial planning. Look at the small steps that can help you grow over time and don’t beat yourself up if it won’t be attainable immediately. Do what you can to build skills in the meantime (whilst juggling those 17 kids – you star, you!).
4. Find your Squad (not the T-Swizzle kind). Your ability to achieve goals can really be helped along by having a solid support crew. Many people say to me – but I don’t have a partner (or my partner just doesn’t get it!)?! Well – I don’t have a partner either, and I’m so lucky I have the most incredible support crew of Michelle, my parents, my brother and his partner and my amazing friends. You could have an amazing boss, a mum from your mothers group, a long lost cousin or a strange entrepreneurial uncle (they’re great for laughs). Who cares who it is? If they are there to cheer you on and help you with strategic advice or feedback, keep them around to help you achieve those goals!
It doesn’t all have to be work related. Goals can be anything! If you want to save for a trip, renovate your house, move up the career ladder, a professional oyster taster (yes please) or become a cabaret singer, go nuts – just write it down!
We hope you write down your goals and please let us know your feedback throughout the year! We hope we can hear your stories at our Ignite sessions in 2018 and see you at our events – keep an eye out for new memberships and Ignite to Fly in March! It’s going to be a big one!
Happy New Year! You go girl!
Dimity Smith is a Workplace Psychologist and Co-Founder of Savvy Birds. With 8 years of working in Occupational Rehabilitation, HR and Corporate Health, Dimity has relished the opportunity at Savvy Birds to talk all things happy workplaces and professional women doing great things. Contact Dimity via email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to talk more about workplace psychology or Savvy Birds opportunities.