It’s that time of year! The time when people make resolutions to improve their life related to health, fitness, family, work and priorities. But a lot of times resolutions are general – eat healthier, workout more, spend more time with the family, take some “me time”. Those kinds of resolutions really set you up for failure because there’s nothing specific about them. You’re simply telling yourself you’re going to do “better”, but not committing to how you’re going to do better.

Resolutions need to be translated into goals. Goals are specific and measurable. Something like, ‘I will workout for 30 minutes a day 5 times a week’ or ‘I will disconnect from social media after dinner to spend the time with my family.’ Those are things you can measure – you can see if you’re actually doing them. And if you’re not doing them you’ll know be able to adjust yourself.

The other reason to have specific goals is that it forces you to have a reason to make them. In order for something to be specific, you have to know why you’re doing it or there’s no motivation to do it. So if you commit to working out 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week, your reason (your ‘why) could be to lose weight, tone up or feel better in your clothes. Spending those last few hours of the day with the family without social media could mean your ‘why’ is to become closer to your spouse or your children and have no distractions.

So think about what you’re ultimately trying to achieve with your “resolutions” and transfer them into specific, measurable GOALS. Why do you want to have this goal? What part of your life will improve? How will you feel when you reach that goal? Then write it down and keep it someplace you can see it everyday – make a sticky note and put it on your computer or dashboard, make it the background photo on your phone or desktop, set a reminder in your phone to “tell” you your goal(s) at the same times everyday. A small constant reminder will help you not forget why you’re changing your behaviors and ensure more that you will achieve what you set out to achieve.