With the New Year in full swing, it’s not uncommon for people to ask, “What’s your resolution?!”

And while it sounds great in theory that we all make a promise to get better in some area of our life, how many of us actually follow through with it?

Personally, I don’t love the word resolution. It’s associated with this time of year when everyone feels like they have a blank slate, but irrelevant a few months from now.

If you start asking around about resolutions in April, I would bet that 9 out of 10 people are going to give you a blank stare.

I am, however, in full support of setting GOALS regularly!

That means setting goals with specific detail, creating an action plan to go alongside them, & writing them down so they can be reviewed often and adjusted as needed.

Why?!

Because if you don’t get crystal clear about where you’re going, how do you expect to get there?!

So whether you’ve already set your goals for the year ahead, or you haven’t even started, here are some questions to ask yourself as you review each one…

IS IT SPECIFIC?

This is one of the aspects I’ve seen people overlook most when they’re setting their goals.

Generally speaking, they know what they want to do (lose weight, pay off debt, go on vacation) but they haven’t decided (or thought about) the nitty-gritty details.

Here’s what I mean…

I want to pay off debt vs. I want to pay off $14,000 of credit card debt and $3,000 of medical debt using Dave Ramsey’s debt snowball program.

I want to lose weight vs. I want to lose 10lbs and 2 pant sizes so that I can fit into my new size 6 dress!

I want to go on vacation vs. I want to go on an all-inclusive trip to Costa Rica for 2 weeks with my whole family!

Do you see how much more powerful it is to include those specific details?!

As one of my mentors once told me, you have to lick the leather. You can’t just talk about that new car you want, you have to know exactly which one it is, go test drive it, and lick the leather!

The clearer you get, the more excited you’ll get, and ultimately, the more determined you’ll be to make it happen despite any obstacles along the way!

IS IT MEASURABLE?

Setting a measurable goal might like an obvious or simple thing to do, but it’s another aspect I see people overlook, even if they are getting specific with other details.

It’s the difference of… “I want to lose 10lbs and 2 pant sizes so that I can fit into my new size 6 dress!” vs. “I want to lose 10lbs and 2 pant sizes so that I can fit into my new size 6 dress by March 1st for the annual women’s dinner on March 3rd!”

Giving yourself a deadline (even if it needs to be adjusted) will create a sense of urgency, but it will also allow you to measure how you’re doing on a daily, weekly or monthly basis in the grand scheme of your goal.

WHY AM I DOING THIS & WHAT AM I WILLING TO GIVE UP IN ORDER TO GET IT?

If you’re going to stick with your goals all year long (and possibly beyond), you’re going to need some strong reasons as to WHY you’re doing this.

Not just why you “should” do it, but why you MUST.

Because if it’s not a MUST for you, it will be too easy to create excuses when you don’t feel like it.

Once you have a strong why in place, it’s also smart to take some time to think about what obstacles or distractions might get in your way, so that you can prepare yourself now on how to handle them.

If your goal is to grow your business to the next level in order to pay off more debt, you will need to invest extra time into working your business… this might mean giving up something “fun” that you usually do in order to do what’s necessary for your long-term goal.

So if you’re used to watching the same TV show every night after you get home from work, that’s a distraction you’ll need to set boundaries for to make sure you get your work done before anything else.

Being self-aware of your weaknesses, distractions and triggers will take a little practice, but it’s hugely helpful when you’re trying to create new habits.

Remember, if you’re prepared for some of those common distractions or challenges to come up, it won’t be a deal-breaker when they do!

WHAT ACTIONS CAN I PUT IN PLACE RIGHT NOW TO ENSURE MY SUCCESS?

The best thing you can do is take MASSIVE ACTION right away.

Once you’ve answered the above questions, your job is to make a list of everything you can possibly think of that will help you reach your goal.

Once you have a list of ideas written down, narrow it down to 4-6 things that will have the MOST impact for the time invested.

Now that you’ve got your highest income-producing and impactful activities in front of you, you can start booking your calendar!

When I’m scheduling for the month ahead, I like to start by blocking off my non-negotiables (travel dates, kids’ activities, special events, etc).

Once I’m done, I know that any remaining time that I haven’t specifically blocked off is now open to start booking business-related activities.

Get your schedule in place and then find at least one thing you can do to take action and propel you in the right direction immediately.

Not tomorrow… not later, but right NOW!

After all, a goal with all the details in the world doesn’t mean much if you don’t follow it with massive action.

And while this process might take slightly more time than you’re used to, I promise you it will get you so much clearer, excited and prepared to crush your goals!

For those of you who already have your goals ready to go for 2018, I would LOVE to read them in the comments!