Maintaining momentum: Reaching your personal goals using creative ideas that help keep you motivated.

It's difficult to believe, but only a few short weeks ago we were ringing in the New Year. Today, halfway through February, many of us have abandoned all hope of achieving our new year's resolutions.

According to one study, 35 percent of people break their resolutions by the end of January. Nearly 40 percent of the people surveyed said they had too many other commitments, while 33 percent said they were not committed to resolution they set to begin with.

Failure to achieve one's resolution can be blamed on a litany of reasons. However, I firmly believe that by implementing a few far-from-dramatic changes success can be achieved. First; most people articulate their resolutions in the form of an activity, lose weight , for example. It will strengthen your resolve if you identify why losing weight is important to you. If your resolution doesn't offer an innate motivation, perhaps now is not the time to set that goal.

Second; I've often thought that employing the word 'resolution' was misguided. I prefer the word goal. If you are resolute in your desire to lose weight, you are unwavering in your course of action. I think that is a recipe for disappointment. A goal is defined as "the purpose toward which an endeavor is directed, an objective". I think the word 'goal' is a more positive word and when you are challenged don't you want more positivity?

Third; Most people maintain some type of calendar to schedule their appointments and obligations. Most people keep a running list of groceries they'll be needing or bills they must pay. But few people write their goals down. Writing down your goals increases the likelihood of your reaching them. There is much satisfaction to be had when you can cross something off your list.

Of critical importance to reaching your goals is the manner in which you set your goals. If you ever read an article about how to keep your resolutions, you've heard these tips a hundred times, but rarely do I see people structuring their goals with these tips in mind.

Goals should always be S.M.A.R.T.

BE SPECIFIC: One of the top new year's resolutions is weight loss. Lose weight. That is not specific. Losing weight is a fairly ambiguous resolution. Restructure your desire to loose weight by understanding how much weight you want to loose and by when.

BABY STEPS: By stating your intended goals in a very specific manner you are beginning to develop a strategic plan. Like all planning, there are incremental steps to make before reaching the desired end. Understand and accept that forward movement is progress.

BE FLEXIBLE: Life is uncertain. Just because you have professed your charted course does not mean that you'll be able to set your compass and sit back. Plan on being forced to readjusting your strategy from time to time. If you know that you are going to have to tweak your stratagem, you won't feel count off guard and will be better able to correct your sails.

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Cut Bait: Are you one of those folks that re-writes the same resolution year after year? Don't continue to torture yourself and feel like a failure. Remove that resolution from your list and move on. I have an aunt who has said that she wants to give up smoking. Smoking is horrible for your health, it's expensive, it's stinks. There are so many reasons for her to give it up and yet she has not. Why? For all abandoned resolutions there is always a why. She understands the consequences of smoking, but emotionally she has not yet made the commitment.

Does that scenario seem familiar? Scratch that resolution off your list until you are truly ready to work on it, otherwise, you will continue to feel badly. This is your life, don't feel compelled to do change for any other person but yourself.

Garner support: Few people are capable of reaching their goals alone. More people find strength to persevere through the support be of friends and family.

Make Time: Remember, this is a strategy, a plan. If your intention is to exercise more, you must schedule it. Write in your calender that Monday, Wednesday and Friday, you have scheduled a 30-minute walk. It's an appointment. Don't break it. If you break a doctor's appointment these days, the office will charge you. If you break your exercise appointment, plan on putting twenty bucks in the till.

Reward Yourself: When you've achieved a goal, how did you celebrate? You didn't? I'm surprised by how few celebrate their achievements when talking about resolutions. It does not matter what age you are. Everyone loves a reward, a treat, a pat on the back. Don't let your hard work and commitment go unrewarded.

Okay, so you've read every article that's ever been written on goal setting. You've purchased every self help book that makes mention of commitment and you've sign up for too many classes that offer a sure-fire way of saving money, losing weight, learning a word a day.

What ever your goals are you need to want them. You need to have a plan. You need to have support. You need to write them down. You also have to live. Try one or two of these more creative methods of holding to your resolutions. If one should help you, wonderful. Don't give up. Keep the prize in mind.

Sitting at your computer all day day dreaming about chocolate donuts is defeatist. Provide yourself with visual encouragement. Create your own desktop wallpaper.
Sitting at your computer all day day dreaming about chocolate donuts is defeatist. Provide yourself with visual encouragement. Create your own desktop wallpaper. | Source
Subway art is very popular. Make your own that exclaims your resolutions and hang it in a place that you walk by each day.
Subway art is very popular. Make your own that exclaims your resolutions and hang it in a place that you walk by each day. | Source
Who doesn't use a writing instrument everyday?Have your resolution stamped onto pens and pencils. Have words of encouragement printed.
Who doesn't use a writing instrument everyday?Have your resolution stamped onto pens and pencils. Have words of encouragement printed. | Source
Are you a Pinterest fan? Create a board and post your list of resolutions. Keep yourself motivated by posting helpful pictures and inspirational quotes.
Are you a Pinterest fan? Create a board and post your list of resolutions. Keep yourself motivated by posting helpful pictures and inspirational quotes. | Source
Prepare a stack of postcards with written notes of encouragement. Have a friend randomly mail them to you.
Prepare a stack of postcards with written notes of encouragement. Have a friend randomly mail them to you. | Source
Fill a special jar with daily aspirations or things you must do today to move closer to your goal. Think of it as your daily fortune cookie to-do.
Fill a special jar with daily aspirations or things you must do today to move closer to your goal. Think of it as your daily fortune cookie to-do. | Source
A tear away calendar is a great reminder that tomorrow is another day.
A tear away calendar is a great reminder that tomorrow is another day. | Source
Lots of people snack while watching TV. Relaxing with a resolution pillow may comfort your cravings a bit. Embroider a pillow or use a fabric pen to write your goals on a pillow you make or buy.
Lots of people snack while watching TV. Relaxing with a resolution pillow may comfort your cravings a bit. Embroider a pillow or use a fabric pen to write your goals on a pillow you make or buy. | Source
Post signs around your home for encouragement.  I leave a note in my morning cup cup to take my vitamins.
Post signs around your home for encouragement. I leave a note in my morning cup cup to take my vitamins. | Source
I keep a journal of all my goals which are represented by a particular charm. Each charm is added to a necklace that I wear as a fun reminder of what my aspirations are.
I keep a journal of all my goals which are represented by a particular charm. Each charm is added to a necklace that I wear as a fun reminder of what my aspirations are. | Source
As I mentioned, goals should be specific. My charms reflect that.
As I mentioned, goals should be specific. My charms reflect that. | Source

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Please leave your comments here. Go Get 'Em! 8 comments

Lizam1 profile image

Lizam1 4 years ago from Victoria BC

Enjoyed this. Do you mind if I share this link with my readers at Finding Fiji? You can find the link on my profile. Thanks for sharing -. Voted up. Nicely done. Liza


alifeofdesign profile image

alifeofdesign 4 years ago from New Hamphire Author

Hi Lizam1. I'm pleased that you liked this hub. I enjoyed looking at your site; Finding Fiji.Yes, you may share my hub with your readers, I hope that they will find it motivational and fun. Looks like you, too, are new to Hub Pages. I'll be sure to read read about your topics. Lizam1, please let me know when you post my hub to your site. I'd like to check it out. ;) Best Regards,


savanahl profile image

savanahl 4 years ago

Great information. I've been attempting the SMART goal setting technique for years. It used to work great when I worked outside the home but now, being a stay at home mom, all order seems to go out the window. :) Thanks for the great reminders.


Lizam1 profile image

Lizam1 4 years ago from Victoria BC

Thanks again - have shared this with my readers for step 34 towards Finding Fiji!


alifeofdesign profile image

alifeofdesign 4 years ago from New Hamphire Author

Somehow, maintaining structure at work seems easier that at home. I struggle with that myself. Before bed, I take a peek at my goals and sleep on them. That is helpful to me.

Thank you for reading ;)


alifeofdesign profile image

alifeofdesign 4 years ago from New Hamphire Author

Wonderful! I'll take a look. I hope that your readers enjoy the ideas.


billybuc profile image

billybuc 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

How is it that you only have twenty followers? This is an excellent hub, well-constructed with great suggestions and ideas. I am going to start signing your praises and we'll see if we can't increase your following.


alifeofdesign profile image

alifeofdesign 4 years ago from New Hamphire Author

Hi billybuc..I'm blushing. Thanks for that compliment-I needed it! I thought perhaps I'd not captured the interests of people. Sure, I have much improvement to make (aren't we all in need of some improvement, time-to-time?) I appreciate your thoughts and your singing! Best Regards,

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