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  • Embrace Performance

How to Achieve Your 2020 Goals

Updated: Nov 10, 2020

As the year draws to a close, it can be worthwhile to reflect on the last twelve months in our professional, sporting, and personal lives. Many of us will have experienced both successes and failures, and hopefully learnt some valuable lessons along the way. Take some time around the start of 2020 to reflect on the positives that have come from the last year. What are you biggest take-aways? How have you grown? What would you like to achieve in the coming year?

Setting goals is a powerful way to motivate ourselves towards the things we want to achieve. Goals impact the intensity of our actions, and a valued goal activates us on an emotional level, greatly improving the strength with which we pursue it. When we experience success in reaching our goals our confidence and belief in our abilities increases, which in turn, helps us to set new goals and to keep pushing ourselves.

“Every person’s life depends on the process of choosing goals to pursue; if you remain passive you are not going to thrive as a human being.” – Locke (2019)

I’m sure we’ve all fallen into the trap of setting ambitious New Year’s Resolutions, only to give up within a couple of months (if we’re lucky). It can be tempting to set harsh and sometimes unrealistic goals. It’s fantastic to identify how we would like to better ourselves, but we should make sure that we are giving ourselves the best chance possible of achieving our goals.

Our top tips for New Year’s Goal Setting are:

1) Choose a challenging (but not impossible) goal

Achieving a goal that has stretched us is incredibly rewarding and pushing ourselves outside of our comfort zones often leads to improved results. However, setting goals that are simply unattainable or unrealistic means we’re less likely to achieve them, which is really disheartening. If in doubt, start small and build them up.

2) Be clear and precise

When a goal is specific, you have a better understanding of what you’re aiming for and what you need to do to achieve it. Setting a general or open-ended goal such as “getting fitter” is less likely to drive success than a specific, measurable target. For example, you could set a goal of competing in a particular fun run or race during the next year, or to commit to going for a walk a set number of times a week. Making the goal time-bound (e.g. setting yourself a target of when you want to achieve it by sets a clear timescale to aim for.

3) Plan how you are going to achieve your goal

Planning helps us to recognise the things we can control, the things that are going to impact our ability to meet our goal. Identifying these ‘controllables’ and determining a plan can increase our belief in ourselves that we can achieve our goal.

4) Consider your ‘why’.

Why are you setting this goal? Is it something you are passionate about achieving, or are you being impacted by some external pressure? Do you really want to do it, and will it provide you with personal fulfilment? How will achieving this goal impact you? It’s really important for your motivation that you consider these questions and really think about the value you hold in your goal.

Let us know the personal, professional or sporting goals you are setting for 2020 in the comments below.

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