Everyone has made New Years resolutions this year, but only 8 percent are going to follow through. The rest? They have already given up.
So how do you set a goal and follow through, especially when people around you are already throwing in the towel? Here are five things you can do to become a success story this year, shared by who already have.
1. Chip Away At Your Goal Every. Single. Day.
Jason Fisher, who runs the site BestLifeRates.org, said he always wanted to leave the rat race. He finally pulled the trigger and is enjoying two straight years of success. He credits reaching his goal to his relentless, daily pursuit.
“Set daily reminders for simple tasks which help you advance. Save a dollar a day. Network with one new person each day. Teach yourself a new task which is going to aid you. Whatever it is, it’s a daily action. If not, then it may not even be your real dream anyway.”
You might be unsure if you can turn your dream into a reality, but until you start making an effort in that direction, you’ll never know for sure.
2. Make Your Dream Real and Tangible.
Ronald Kaufman took eight years to write his book Anatomy of Success. So what kept him motivated throughout the years? According to Kaufman, a dream isn’t reality until you create a physical blueprint.
“A goal needs to be important enough, and achieving it believable enough, to keep someone motivated,” he said. “Effective goals need to be crystal clear, specific, positive, and measurable.”
3. Break It Down Into Checklists.
“Checklists are a goal’s best friend,” explained Brandon Marcott, founder of Edify Financial Planning, who quit his job in November and launched a business two months later.
But simply creating a list and checking of each task won’t get you anywhere. Marcott explained, “The point is that you need to take something big and break it down in to little bite size chunks to avoid the overwhelming feeling that can easily numb us into doing nothing.”
“Checklists give tangible, time-sensitive targets that are easier to stomach and much more quantifiable than the major goal,” he added. “Break them down by specific filters (i.e., time frame, cost, importance) and don’t let your checklists get stale.”
4. Tell Your Friends and Family.
One of the biggest challenges is getting buy-in from friends, family, and colleagues. When you dedicate all your time and attention to a major goal, it can cause others to become resentful.
“If you aren’t clear on what people can expect from you then you won’t really go very far,” said Thomas Bryer of Bryer Leather. “Honesty and clarity when you communicate is exponentially more important than anything else you can do on a day-to day basis. It will make your girlfriend understand why you won’t be around that day, or it keep expectations clear when working with a new collaboration.”
5. Get an Accountability Partner.
At the end of the day, you can’t expect everyone to be on your side. Finding someone you can confide in will keep you focused and help you stay the course when things don’t go your way.
“Knowing that someone is going to check in on me always makes me work harder to get my tasks accomplished,” said personal finance coach Dominique Broadway.
After all, haters gonna hate, so be sure you have someone who believes in your dream and will push you to be your best.