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Is setting goals more effective than making New Year Resolutions to achieve success

goal setting for women over 50Article by Ceri Wheeldon

I have spent so many years making resolutions, only to have most fall by the wayside before we even hit mid January.

Most of my resolutions seems to consist of doing ‘less’ of something – such as eating, or doing ‘more’ of things such as exercise. All a bit vague.

Setting goals

So this year I am setting concrete goals and not making resolutions.

Last year I looked to do similar, but my career and personal goals took a back seat to renovating a new home, which although much loved by its previous owner, had been mostly untouched for nearly 50 years. So now, with renovations complete, I can focus on real life.

So this year I am starting with a list of goals, with achievable milestones, and also potential mentors for each area. I realise that I need not just goals, but corresponding plans to achieve them. What the ‘year of the house’ taught me was the importance of having not just goals, but a clear vision and a plan as to how to achieve them. In renovating the house from top to bottom there was a logical list of things to be done in a specific order – the basics such as knocking down walls, rewiring and replumbing had to be covered before we could start working on the more exciting and rewarding aspects. There were milestones to celebrate along the way, such as the new kitchen ( signalling the end of microwaved dinners), and a loo that actually flushed. We also had to identify which elements needed some more specialist skills than our core team on site could provide.

So in 2013 my life and career goals are being set as projects in much the same way as my home renovations were last year.

Having a plan to achieve each goal

Each goal is being set up as a project, with specific milestones, deliverables and review points. For my business goals where I do not have the skills to achieve I have determined which are best outsourced, and which I should take courses to develop myself.

A goal needs to be clearly defined with a plan, action points, deliverables, recognition of any obvious obstacles if it has a chance to be achieved.

Some goals may be best achieved if you identify somebody you need to be accountable to for your progress , that could be fitness buddy, life coach, mentor, business buddy. Having a weekly or fortnightly catch up knowing that you have to demonstrate how you have progressed since the last session could be the difference between that book getting published, the business being launched , the weight being lost, or finishing the year with very little changed.

If anyone is interested in connecting with ‘goal buddies’ I am happy to set up a group for people to connect with similar minded women via the community section of the website. It would be great if we could make 2013 the year of women over 50 making things happen!

Will I achieve my own goals in 2013? Will you achieve your goals?

I hope so! At least this year I’m starting with a plan ( and a buddy) !

Happy New Year!

Ceri Wheeldon

Ceri is Founder and Editor of Fabafterfifty.co.uk She is a frequent speaker at events and in the media on topics related to women over 50 , including style and living agelessly. With 20+ years experience as a headhunter Ceri also now helps support those looking to extend their working lives.

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