So guys, we’re just over a week into 2018……. How are your New Years resolutions going?

Maybe you’re finding it difficult to resist the midweek vino’s you promised you’d ditch, those 5am wake up calls for the gym are repeatedly being snoozed or you’ve succumbed to the choc chip cookies in the office like us here at MARSDEN Collective…..

Goal setting can be easy for some but for a lot of people it can be a challenge. We tend to put a lot of pressure on the idea of setting goals for our personal and professional lives. It can be daunting and sometimes it can lead to an unnecessary amount of anxiety. To help you get through the process firstly remove the pressure and instead of setting life goals, think about setting a Life direction. Figure out the things that you want that would create a fun, meaningful and compelling journey.

When getting started an important thing to remember is, if the goal doesn’t work out, change it! You are in control! There are no barriers, this is your chance to dream and think big. Only you know what you want your life journey to be, Travis Robertson talks more about the importance of the journey that leads you to your end goal.

Stever Robbins from Fast Company has put together a helpful set of questions to help start the process of setting your ‘life direction’ or goals.

  1. How do I want to spend my time?
  2. What daily activities make me want to leap out of bed?
  3. What do I want to learn?
  4. Who do I want to hang out with? Talk with? Collaborate with?

Basic questions like these will hopefully help you gain more clarity and give you some general focus. Take some time to be alone and quietly think about what you really want and want is meaningful to you. You need to make sure you are passionate about what you are wanting to achieve, they can be as big as you want them to be but make sure they are realistic.

Ready to get started? Here are The Five Golden Rules from Mind Tools….

1. Set Goals That Motivate You

This means making sure that they are important to you, and that there is value in achieving them. If you have little interest in the outcome, or they are irrelevant given the larger picture, then the chances of you putting in the work to make them happen are slim. Motivation is key to achieving goals.

Goal achievement requires commitment, so to maximize the likelihood of success, you need to feel a sense of urgency and have an “I must do this” attitude. When you don’t have this, you risk putting off what you need to do to make the goal a reality.

2. Set SMART Goals

There are many variations of what SMART stands for, but the essence is this – goals should be:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Time Bound.

Specific Goals

Your goal must be clear and well defined. Make it as easy as you can to get where you want to go by defining precisely where you want to end up.

Measurable Goals

Include precise dates in your goals so you can measure your degree of success. It is not enough to say read more, make this measurable by changing you goal to read 2 books per month. Without a way to measure your success you miss out on the celebration that comes with knowing you have actually achieved something.

Attainable Goals

Make sure that it’s possible to achieve the goals you set. If you set a goal that you have no hope of achieving, you are likely to be disappointed and demotivated with other goals as a result, but saying this resist the urge to set goals that are too easy.

Relevant Goals

Goals should be relevant to the direction you want your life and career to take. By keeping goals aligned with this, you’ll develop the focus you need to get ahead and do what you want.

Time-Bound Goals

Your goals must have a deadline. Again, this means that you know when you can celebrate success. When you are working on a deadline, your sense of urgency increases and achievement will come that much quicker.

3. Set Goals in Writing

The physical act of writing down a goal makes it real and tangible. You have no excuse for forgetting about it. As you write, use the word “will” instead of “would like to” or “might.” Post your goals in visible places to remind yourself every day of what it is you intend to do. Put them on your walls, desk, computer monitor, bathroom mirror or refrigerator as a constant reminder.

4. Make an Action Plan

This step is often missed in the process of goal setting. You get so focused on the outcome that you forget to plan all of the steps that are needed along the way. By writing out the individual steps, and then crossing each one off as you complete it, you’ll realize that you are making progress towards your ultimate goal. This is especially important if your goal is big and demanding, or long-term.

The Life Coach Spotter states ‘a long-term goal can’t be achieved without a shorter term goal’ the short-term ones help you reach your long-term goal. They are essentially stepping-stones, so when thinking about your goals make sure you have short-term ones in place. They are important as they give you a sense of self- confidence and self- worth along the way of achieving the greater picture.

5. Stick With It!

Make it a Habit

The Journal reminds us, it is important to remember that you are, generally speaking, trying to change something about the way you live, therefore it is important to remember that it helps to make the resolution part of your routine. If your resolution is to go to the gym or read or paint etc, actually put it in your diary/calender to do. Schedule in that hour in the evening/morning and it becomes part of your day, not another additional thing. This scheduling and habit forming can help overcome one major flaw in the human brain – a lack of self control.

Piggyback to make it stick

Pairing things works – e.g. listen to that new podcast on your run/read on your commute every morning/take your vitamins with breakfast. This theory is backed up by a study from the London School of Health and Tropical Medicine, which studied how habits are formed. It suggests that people have an easier time bundling their habits on top of existing activities.

We are loving our Stand Out Planners for 2018 by Ali Hill here at MARSDEN Collective, so excited about setting our goals!

Remember this shouldn’t be a chore, it’s simply turning your dream into a reality with an action plan. No goal is foolish, free your mind and eliminate any mental road – blocks, make sure you are in control and concentrate on what you really want. Remember that if you find yourself on the wrong journey you are in control and are free to change your goals at any stage, there is no pressure.

So, what will you decide to accomplish today?





Blog Contributed by Tarryn Hogan

“Our stealthy ninja who’ll explore the ends of the earth to solve your problem”