To avoid falling into another comfort zone we reset our goals as we close in on the fulfillment of our old ones. Our comfort zone is a potential trap that can ensnare us anytime we reach the next rung on the ladder. But to keep motivation and to sustain momentum, to keep the rally going, we need to look up and find our next hand hold and reach out for it.

To keep going we must first know precisely where we are going. Otherwise all our energy, all our dedication, all of our spent attention is nothing more than wheels spinning in mud. Without a clear destination, we could be busting our butt doing nothing but turning circles on the same path, over and repeatedly.

To understand the next step, to find the next rung, the next turn-off on your trail, we must know where we are headed. To do that, we need to examine our dreams, hopes and longings to create goals. Here is a good reason for not failing at your goals.

Did you know that only eight percent of Americans actually achieve their New Year’s resolutions? According to the Journal of Clinical Psychology, nearly 45 percent of Americans make annual resolutions. These resolutions include lose weight, get organized, spend less save more, enjoy life, stay fit, quit smoking and spend more time with family.

Out of the 45 or so percent of the population that sets out each January to achieve new goals, not many succeed at goal-setting, but since eight percent do, let’s focus on how they do it.

Keep your goals simple
People are already overwhelmed with competing priorities. While using New Year’s as an opportunity to create a fresh bucket list is a nice aspiration, this type of approach is almost always doomed to fail due to other priorities.

Since shooting for the moon can be psychologically daunting, psychologist Lynn Bufka, explains your success at goal-setting increases greatly if you set “small, attainable goals throughout the year, rather than a singular, overwhelming goal.” She adds, “remember, it is not the extent of the change that matters, but rather the act of recognizing that lifestyle change is important and working toward it, one step at a time.”

Make them real
While goal-setting can be inspiring and fun, fulfilling intangible goals can quickly leave you feeling frustrated. Set your goals realistically by achievable, rational boundaries. Roy Baumeister, social psychologist, explains, “a resolution to lose some weight is not that easy to follow. It is much easier to follow a plan that says no potato chips, fries, or ice cream for six weeks.”

Create obvious goals
While there is no universal strategy for goal-setting success, experts have found that those who chart their goals by writing them down act as a clear to-do list as well as a daily reminder. John Norcross of the University of Scranton suggests, “don’t say you’re going to start going to the gym — set a clear ambition, like attending a weekly spin class or lifting weights every Tuesday or Thursday.” He reminds goal-setters, “we say if you can’t measure it, it’s not a very good resolution because vague goals beget vague resolutions.

Article Author: Smiljan Mori is the founder of MindOver™ Network, Brilliant solutions for Performance, Motivation and Happiness. He is also the creator of Big U Academy , the Kitepreneur NetworkTM and Kitepreneur Lifestyle Academy . He has literally created a successful business and coaching empire from scratch and is a best-selling author and motivational speaker who brings unparalleled professional experience and the latest scientific research from neuroscience and positive psychology to audiences around the globe. He has shown more than 150,000 people from 50 countries how to change their lives for the better.

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Article References:
Motivaction For Life by Smiljan Mori
Forbes

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