What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.” – Zig Ziglar
I hate the term New Year’s ‘resolution.’
To me, you make a ‘resolution’ to stop doing something, like smoking, chewing your fingernails, or farting at the dinner table. The word carries a negative connotation. Maybe that’s why so many resolutions fail.
I prefer the term New Year’s ‘goal.’ Well, I just made it up. But still, I prefer the word ‘goal’ over ‘resolution’ any day!
A goal can still mean kicking a bad habit. But it can also mean creating good habits, accomplishing a dream, or overcoming a fear that has been holding you back for too long.
Do you want to learn how to make a New Year’s goal that makes it past January 10th?
Then read on.
Why I Used to Avoid Setting Goals
I avoided setting goals for a long time. My logic was this:
Without goals I lowered my expectations. With low expectations, I could never be disappointed in myself for not accomplishing my goals.
But, I found out my logic was wrong.
Without goals I stopped learning and growing. I became depressed. I spent more time on the couch watching reruns of Modern Family than I’d like to admit.
Then, one day, something in my head clicked. I decided to stop feeling sorry for myself. I needed a challenge. So, I started setting goals again; something to strive for.
And this is the formula I followed to do it:
Start by Setting SMART Goals
When you’re thinking about setting a new goal, think SMART.
SMART was created in 1981 by George Doran. He created the now popular acronym as a better way in which to write the goals and objectives of management personnel.
SMART stands for the following:
S = Specific
M = Measurable
A = Adjustable or Attainable
R = Realistic
T = Time-Related
In my opinion, setting a goal is the easy part. Sure, it’s important to set SMART goals, but the true test is how you’re going to arrive at your goal.
Achieving your goal is a whole other story.
How to ACHIEVE Your Goals with FARGA
I believe the most difficult part about personal goals is the journey between setting your goal and accomplishment.
This is where FARGA comes in.
FARGA was created in 2015 by a relatively unknown blogger named Eric Ibey.
What? Don’t laugh. I’ve always wanted to create my own acronym!
Here we go!
F = Focus
How many goals have you set in the past but over time your motivation dwindled away?
If you’re going to achieve your goal, you need to stay focused. You have to think about your goal every day and push other distractions to the side. Remember WHY you decided to do it.
If Warren Buffet and Bill Gates can both agree that the most important factor in achieving their success was focus, then it’s probably worth it for you to stay focused as well.
A = Action
If you have a goal, do something every day, no matter how small, that brings you closer to your goal.
Read one chapter in a book. Conduct 20 minutes of Google research. Call someone for advice. Run an errand. Do something—anything—that brings you a little closer to your goal.
Every. Single. Day.
R = Resilience
There will be bumps in the road. You will have setbacks.
But, are you going to curl up into a ball and give up when these mini-failures happen? Or are you going to push through with a smile on your face and allow your fear of failure to propel you forward?
Stay positive and resilient. Use hardship to motivate. Keep going.
G = Grit
I love the word ‘grit.’
To have a better chance at achieving your goals, you have to be gritty.
Watch the six minute TED talk from Angela Duckworth. As she says, “Grit is passion, perseverance, and stamina. Grit is living life like it’s a marathon, not a sprint.”
Want to achieve your goal? Get gritty!
A = Accountability
We can’t keep ourselves accountable all the time.
We need family, friends, teachers, mentors, and coaches to help keep us accountable during the times we feel like slowing down or giving up. During those times of self-doubt an accountability partner can be a saviour.
Tell someone about your goal, tell them why it’s important to you, and tell them when you plan on accomplishing it. And ask them to keep you accountable.
Did you have a goal in mind for yourself while you read this post? How did your goal measure up to the SMART FARGA formula?
Did you realize you were missing some components? Did you come up with an idea for a new goal?
One final thought I’d like to leave with you today:
It’s easy to get caught up in the end game. You have a goal and you concentrate on the accomplishment. But life isn’t just about the goal at the end of the tunnel. Life is about the journey. Getting to the goal is just as much fun as accomplishing it.
Set SMART goals. Achieve them with FARGA. And don’t forget to enjoy the journey.
So, go ahead. Make a New Year’s goal for yourself. Because with SMART FARGA, you can’t fail.