Smart’en up your new year’s resolutions

Oasis Living Magazine, January 01, 2011

The New Year is an exciting time, which often involves celebrating, catching up with friends and family. It is also a time for the customary New Year’s Resolution. We often make ourselves feel guilty about something in our life and use this time to “change things”. However, the New Year’s Resolution frequently becomes nothing more than a wish, a hope or simply an intention. It may be vague or sometimes totally unrealistic. We might start with determination and enthusiasm, but we quickly run out of steam and then give up and promise ourselves that next year we will follow through and succeed.

So, this year, why not turn your New Year’s Resolution into a New Year’s Goal instead. I’m a firm believer that if you transform your resolutions into SMART Goals, you will significantly increase your chances of success.

Adopting a SMART goal is a simple and effective formula to achieve the results you desire:

SMART = Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time frame

Here is a plan of action that can help you decide and follow through with your New Year’s Resolution Goal.

1. Reflect – The first step is to evaluate where you are now Take this time to reflect on the last year. Ask yourself: What made me happy this year? What did I learn? Which challenges did I take and enjoy? What made me feel good about myself? What was missing?

2. Brainstorm – Where and who do you want to be? Take 10 minutes and write all your ideas on paper. (Let your imagination go wild! No censoring your thoughts here!) Which areas of my life need attention? Is it my career, my relationship, my contribution to the community, my physical health, my personal growth? What challenge would be good for me? How can I stretch myself this year?

3. Identify General Goals: Choose 2 or 3 goals that are the most important to you at this stage in your life. To maintain your resolution for the year, you must have a clear purpose of why you want this. Eg: Goal: Develop my Self Confidence Purpose: To believe in myself and feel confident in my abilities

4. E4. Establish a SMART Goal statement:

• Is it Specific? How? What? When? Who? What is your strategy?

• Is it Measurable? How will you know you are progressing?

• Is it Achievable? Is this goal achievable or is it a wish?

• Is it Realistic? Is it possible? Can it be accomplished in the timeframe?

• What Timeframe? By the ___________, 2011 I will have achieved my goal. Eg: I will develop self-confidence to believe in myself and feel confident in my abilities at work (R). I will do so by seeking out books, DVDs and active courses (S). I will commit myself to complete 2 courses by March 2011 (A). I will keep a journal to track my progress that I will fill in weekly (M). By September

5. Create a positive affirmation: It is important to create a positive affirmation to support your goal. This affirmation should be in the present tense, as if you have already achieved your goal. You can write it on sticky notes and put them on your fridge or your mirror – wherever you will see it often. Make sure to repeat this affirmation many times every day. It is best to say it first thing in the morning and just before going to sleep. Saying and repeating this affirmation out loud is also very powerful. (eg: when you are driving or when you are walking by yourself).

Eg: Affirmation: I’m confident and feel fantastic about myself! Affirmation: I’m now 60 kgs and I feel great!

To grow as a person, we need to push ourselves out of our comfort zone. Why not use this time to reflect and plan your New Year’s Goals smartly!

Good luck and I wish all of you a fabulous year 2011!


Goal Suggestions:

Develop my Self-Confidence

Learn a new hobby

Spend more time with my children/husband/friends

Seek new Spiritual Practices

Learn Arabic

Volunteer my services

Sponsor a child / give a monthly amount to a charity

Meet new people (join an organization or a club) “Handwrite” letters to the people I love

Start a Gratitude Journal

Join courses for my Personal Development

Establish “5 daily healthy habits” and follow through

Take some “ME” time on daily basis

Establish a healthy routine

Get fit! Save _____ AED this year!



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