With the warm breeze flowing in the air, the sun shining longer, and the flowers blooming, spring has officially sprung upon us once again. While these changes are occurring in our outdoors, there may also be a feeling of growth and optimism happening right inside of us. As this season is known for renewal and expansion, this newfound hopefulness you may be experiencing should be of no surprise. Instead, cultivate this sense and let it be the force that leads to the changes you want to see in your life by setting your intentions and creating new goals.
However, if you are anything like me, this feeling of anticipation may also be overwhelming. You have so much energy to channel, but you aren’t sure how to properly translate it into the actionable changes you seek. But don’t let this discourage you. In lieu of your confusion, consider these tips for springtime goal setting that have allowed me to accomplish many of the ones I have sought out for myself.
Keep it realistic and precise
You may be familiar with the mnemonic acronym S.M.A.R.T. in relation to goal setting. Well, this concept truly does live up to what it spells. Being Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-based is necessary when creating goals for yourself. Think of what you want to attain, and once you have that goal in mind, see if it meets the criteria. If it doesn’t, that’s okay too. Still, the point of the concept is to help focus your efforts and increase the chances of achieving your goals, so it is with heavy consideration you follow, especially if you are one to easily become overwhelmed or deflated. Having realistic and precise goals will more than likely result in the success you want to see.
Write it down
Write whatever it is you want to achieve down on something of your choosing, but preferably on a piece of paper, journal, or even create a vision board. Having a physical copy will allow you to refer back to it at all times. But you also have it to post on your wall or mirror, which can serve as a visible reminder when you wake in the morning, as you are getting ready for your day, and right before you sleep, so you become less likely to fall off track. Most importantly, studies have shown that vividly describing your goals in written form is strongly associated with goal success, and those who do so are anywhere from 1.2 to 1.4 times more likely to accomplish their goals.
Check in with yourself
Checking in with yourself frequently is the step in goal-getting, I can’t stress enough. The reason why many of us end up falling behind in our goals is because we tend to forget this step. Don’t dwell too hard on yourself if you do. It’s common for the energy you once had to completely fizzle out. First, decide how frequently you want to check in with yourself. You may start off with weekly check-ins and gradually move to monthly. Once you decide on a time, make a note of the day you plan on having this check in. This can be through a Google Calendar reminder, jotting it down on your planner, or in any other way of your choosing. But when the time finally comes, ask yourself the following questions:
- How far have I gotten in reaching my goals?
- What factors may have resulted in any difficulties reaching my proposed goals?
- Do any of my goals need to be adjusted to align with any new changes?
- Why are these goals important and meaningful to me?
These questions will help you assess how far you’ve come, correct and adjust to any changes, and reflect on why your goals may be of importance to you, which will only motivate you to keep going.
Always keep going
Lastly, always keep going. It’s completely normal to experience feelings of discouragement or even failure. But don’t let it overwhelm you and make you want to give up altogether. Change and success are never linear, so having such expectations when you go about accomplishing your goals will only intensify disappointment. Continue to go at your own pace, as it allows for less pressure and the eventual accomplishment of your goals.