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New Year, New Goals!

5 Ways to Ensure Success This Year…

The New Year has arrived and like years prior, it’s GOING and FAST! Many are already discouraged as the first couple of weeks haven’t proven as promising as one had hoped. Still, there’s time for change and there’s time for success. The girl-gang of Marquisha&Co, The Sanctuary Collective, meets regularly and a key piece of our conversations is goal setting and achievement. There’s a science to goal setting and while it’s not as complicated as chemistry, it is as critical.

I like to think of goal setting as a cousin to discipline and a parent to success. In order for us to achieve the things that we want to achieve, there’s a level of functionality that must be present, similar to the workings of a family. Each year, new year resolutions plague online platforms and folks talk about their desire to improve, do better, become better versions of themselves, and work toward positive change. The formula to get there is a simple one, but it does not equate to success, without discipline. Further, the desire toward success isn’t enough to get you there, at least not on its own.

So, what does it take to ensure success? Yes, that is the critical question. Below, you’ll find 5 tips that are sure to get you where you want to be over the course of the next 350 days.

  1. Identify Your Desires
  2. Evaluate Your Capacity
  3. Inventory Your Strengths
  4. Examine Your Gap Areas
  5. Create a Plan of Action

While this might all sound fairly simple, this tends to be the area where we lose folks. The steps listed above are simple, but require us to sit down long enough to think through our mess, and create a plan and path forward. Often times, we find this process daunting, exhausting, or unnecessary. I am here to tell you that it DOES NOT HAVE TO BE AND, I can prove it. I have used these tips and tools since I began undergraduate matriculation. The same semester I started college, is the same semester I gave birth to my first child. It was the tips listed above that helped me muddle through my first year and 4 other degree programs. Too, these are steps I continue to use with clients and for myself as we continue to build, goal set, and dream achieve.

So, identifying your desires. What does that mean? It means to name the things you want. What are your goals and dreams? Have you put words to them? Do they make sense to you? Do you have clarity around why these are the things you want? If so, you’ve identified your desires. If not, there’s work to be done!

Secondly, evaluate your capacity. What do you have time for? What can you handle, commit to, make time for, sacrifice? Capacity is a key ingredient to success. Once you’ve evaluated this component, you should have a solid foundation of how much you can give, take, do, plan for. This allows you navigate the rest of the process in an efficient and realistic way.

Thirdly, inventory your strengths. What strengths do you have? How will you leverage them to achieve the goals you have? What about your strengths position you for and toward success as it relates to what you desire?

Next, you’ll want to examine your gap areas. While this is sometimes thought of as a negative, it serves as a positive for you. If you know your gaps/weaknesses, they can’t be used against you. If you’re aware of those areas that require more work, you can work on them and by the time others recognize it’s a gap area, you will have made it a strength. This is also an important part of the process because you will know what to steer clear without the proper support. You can also seek mentors, friends, family, professional support in the areas that serve as gaps for you, as they may be strong in the areas that you are not. It is true what they say, it does indeed take teamwork, to make the dream work.

Lastly, create a plan of action. How are you going to move forward? How are you going to measure success? The S.M.A.R.T goal format is a fantastic framework for this part of the process. S.M.A.R.T goals are: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. This is exactly what your plan of action should be. If it’s not specific, narrow it down. If it’s not measurable, rework the plan so that your measurement is in alignment with what you want to achieve. If it’s not achievable, ask yourself why? Chances are, it’s not specific, measurable, or time-bound. Is it relevant? Does it make sense to work toward this goal in this season in your life? Do you have the capacity for it? If so, great! If not, consider postponing it. Lastly, time-bound–goals you set for yourself should trackable. Can you achieve the given goal in the amount of time that you have? I know time is a relative concept, but its importance is not to be lost on us. This piece is critical as 62% people give up on their resolutions in ONE month. While you might think that you have all the time in the world to do a thing, the reality is that you don’t. GET GOING NOW and set a few soft and one hard deadlines for yourself. It helps and keeps you accountable.

I hope you’ve found these tips and tools helpful. Improvement is not linear. It doesn’t happen overnight and it doesn’t always look the same. Each person will navigate the journey differently and face different challenges, the key is keeping your mental balanced and leveraging the tips above in the way that works best for you! Have questions? Comment below or send me an email., hello@marquishaandco.com. Want support managing your goals further? Consider services offered via Marquisha+Co. You can find more information here.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Trista Holiday

    Awesome thank you!!! I can’t wait to put the SMART method into effect to help me reach and maximize my full potential this year!!!!

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