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New Year’s Resolutions: Time to Check Back In

By Kelley Vargo

Goals. Most of us have made some weeks ago, we might have many, we might have few. Some people have what I like to call wishes.  The difference between a goal and a wish is having a plan of action and using it.

I spoke to the IRS Chief of Council staff this past Wednesday on Keeping New Years Resolutions: Weight Loss and Weight Maintenance.  Personally, I don’t believe in resolutions anymore, or at least not ‘New Year’s Resolutions’.  Why? Because they are like wishes, they create an expectation in our mind and often, we don’t have a plan of action for achieving them.  Goals have plans.  Why not call them ‘New Year’s Goals’? And with ‘New Year’s Goals’ comes the planning. The plans include strategies for managing stress, creating time for workouts, spending time with loved ones, incorporating healthy eating, and have room for slip-ups.  ‘New Year’s Goals’ are almost impossible to fail at.  How? They are not outcome-oriented goals, but rather process-oriented ones.  In other words, the entire year is a successful product of the goal.

So now that we are 4 weeks into the New Year, how are you doing with your goals? If you are like most people, you might have forgotten what you even said you wanted to do in 2012. Time to check back in and break-down the overwhelm that can be “New Years Resolutions.” Instead of forgetting all, simply focus on one and then break down it into smaller, attainable steps.

Take a second and think about that one goal …start big… In a year from now, what is something you would like to do, have, achieve, accomplish? Now we will break it down:

One Year From Now, I will …


What can you do within the next month to work toward your goal for the year? …
One Month From Now, I will …


What can you do within the next week to work toward your goal for the month? …
One Week From Now, I will…


What can you do within the next day to work toward your goal for the week? …
One Day From Now, I will …


Try it!  I dare you!  Write down your four goals and keep them somewhere where you can refer from them time to time.  You’d be surprised.  My sister, Krissy, had me do this a few years ago.  I remember writing

  • In 2 years I wanted to have been in grad school and have my own place
  • In 2 months I wanted to have competed and been accepted to grad school
  • In 2 weeks I wanted to take my CSCS and apply to graduate school.

I lost the paper for the time being, but found it right before moving out to DC for graduate school.  Well, here it is, 2 years later – I am in my own place and planning on graduating in May. Looks like its time to revisit my yearly or biyearly plans too!

As always, I love hearing from you!  Send me your thoughts, questions, and goals!  xo, Kelley Vargo

One of Kelley’s Goals, accomplished!

Related: 18 Ways to Ensure 2012 is Your Best Year Yet

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