How to Set a Goal That You Will Actually Stick To!


Each year the new year rolls around. And, each year it is likely that you set a goal. How often do you actually carry through with that goal? If the answer is very rarely, you are in good company. In 2019, about 19% of people who set a New Year’s resolution actually stuck with their goals. I can imagine that number is even less for 2020 based on the year we all had. Clearly something about how we set our goals for the new year is not working. Below we will explore some ways to take your resolution to the next level in 2021.

Make Your Goals SMART

Specific – Get very detailed with what you want to accomplish.

Measurable – What way will you measure if this goal is successful? Think of quantitative or qualitative ways to measure your success or adherence. 

Attainable/Achievable – Is this goal realistic? Push yourself but also be honest with yourself. 

Relevant – Does this goal support you positively? Does it fit into your big picture? 

Time-bound – Give yourself a time frame, for example in 2021, or by May 2nd.

Believe in Yourself

This may sound silly, but simply believing in yourself can go a looooong way. You must feel confident in yourself and your ability to make your goals happen. This is the first step to success. You need to trust the process. Thoughts create your reality and if you have negative, doubtful thoughts about your goals that can manifest into your reality and keep you from what you want.

Get in Touch with Your Feelings

Stop setting goals that you think you should be setting and start setting the goals that will make you feel better! Reflect on how you want to feel in this upcoming year. What goals can help bring about those feelings? Or, if you already have goals in mind, write them down and then brainstorm all the feelings associated with that goal. Think “how will I feel once I accomplish this goal?” Feelings can be very motivating factors. 

Ask Yourself “Why?”

When you set a goal make sure you dive deep into why this is your goal. Try to write out two or three “why” statements per goal. These “whys” will help you understand the reasoning behind a certain goal and this reasoning is typically stronger than the goal itself. For example, your goal may be to lose 40lbs in 2021. The first why may be so that you can feel confident in your own skin. The second why could be so that you can be around and active in your kids’ lives. These why statements are much more motivating than the goal of losing weight alone and can also tap into those feelings mentioned above. 

Anticipate Barriers

No journey comes without some challenges. Try to anticipate any barriers that may pop up that could hinder your progress of your goals. Once you have identified some barriers, brainstorm some ways to work around them! That way when trouble arises you already have a plan of attack. 

Be Flexible in Your Methods  

You may have heard the quote “Be stubborn about your goals, but flexible about your methods.” There is a lot of truth here. There may be times when things come up and you get off track. Instead of bailing on your goals, get creative and try a different approach. There are so many ways to get to one outcome. Also, this can relate to the time-bound piece of your SMART goal. Say you get to the “deadline” you set but you are only 75% to your goal. Are you going to quit just because you didn’t meet the deadline in your head? Some people would! But what you should do is extend some grace and flexibility to yourself and set a new time frame while reevaluating your methods. 

Set Check Ins & Reward Yourself Along the Way

I would suggest a monthly check in if you are doing a New Year’s resolution. Make it a consistent day (i.e.: the first of each month). Schedule your check in like it is a meeting. In this “meeting” evaluate your progress, your wins, areas for improvement and establish rewards for certain milestones. 

Lose the All or Nothing Mindset

So many people will count their resolution as a failure if they mess up just one time. Do not be afraid to fail. In fact, expect to fail! Slipping up a few times does not write your whole goal off as a failure. Fail forward, meaning fail and then recommit and move on having learned something new about your goal or journey. 

This year try out these tips to help set you up for the most goal-oriented year yet! Be a part of the 19% who actually stick to their resolutions. Keep an eye out on our Instagram @chop5salad, @chop5polaris, @chop5boulder for weekly CHOP5 giveaways that will help you get thinking about your goals!

In 2021, may you chop well, eat well and live well!