33: Why You Should Ditch Your Resolutions

How to accomplish what you want, and why it matters to your family.


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“Resolutions” are pretty worthless for a whole lot of people.

  • We’ve heard that 40% of U.S. adults per cent of US adults make New Year’s Resolutions, but only around half of them will actually stick with their resolutions!
  • Moreover, one in three will fail within first seven days. If you want to actually improve your life, resolutions don’t have the best track record. Maybe it’s time to ditch those resolutions.

But when you set a goal, the stakes seem higher.

  • Resolutions are flimsy, but goals are for long-term winning.
  • “Maybe it’s just semantics, but for me, if I miss a goal I’ve committed to I feel like a bigger loser than when I just break a resolution.”
  • Since resolutions are linked so closely to the New Year timeframe, they seem fleeting and temporary. Goals, however, can be something you set for a year from now or ten years from now.

What does this have to do with families?

  • After all, Above Average this isn’t a self-help podcast – we’re all about that big family life!
  • But the better parent you are, the stronger your family will be. And by developing the skills to set and achieve goals, you’ll help your kids do the same.
  • If you have a specific method and a plan to follow – whether it’s goal setting or teaching your kids to fold clothes – you’re more likely to be successful.
  • Apply these principles, and teach your family as you go along. Set goals yourself, and have your kids set their own.
    • Got little athletes in the house? Show them this video of a relatively short teenager who learned to dunk!

5 musts for making goals work

Goals that work have a broader plan behind them. They must be:

  • Specific:
    • Don’t say “I want to ‘lose weight.'” Say, “I want to lose 8lbs.”
      Don’t say “I want to read ‘more.'” Say, “I’m going to read 24 books this year.”
  • Measurable and time-sensitive:
    • Set a deadline! But it’s just as important to create milestones.
    • You want to lose 8lbs in a month? Break that down to a weekly or monthly goal – “I’m going to drop 2 pounds a week.” And track that progress along the way.
  • Written down
    • Talk is cheap. But writing them down – and maybe even putting them somewhere you’ll see them often like your bathroom mirror – will motivate you longer-term.
  • Your own goals!
    • If you’re setting a goal because someone has pressured you, you’re much less likely to achieve it. You’ve got to own this.

Ready for the next step?

We mentioned at the end of the show we found 3 serious ways you can help make sure the goals you set are actually reached. Check them out here: 3 Unique Tips for Making Sure You Hit Your Goals.

Listen to more in the show, Episode 33 of Above Average: The podcast for big families.

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