After reading my friend Valerie’s blog post about not making new years resolutions, I was inspired to write my own post about them.
I think new year resolutions are a good thing, if done well. I won’t say there is a correct way to make goals, but there are ways to better help you reach your goals. Thanks to my PR classes, I’ve learned some helpful hints:
1. Break down big goals into smaller, manageable pieces. In the world of public relations and marketing, campaigns have goals and objectives. Goals are the over arching idea that you want achieve, whereas the objectives are more specific actions you will take to achieve the goal. If you want to get healthy, break that down into work out and eat healthy.
2. Make your goals measurable. In a PR campaign you need to say more than just “improve brand identity.” One objective we created our senior year in campaigns class, was to “create and publish 3-5 promotional pieces over a 12-month period.” This is measurable – you can look back and see if you created a minimum of 3 pieces and how long it took you to do so. For our work out objective, this could mean go to the gym for 1 hour 3 times a week.
3. Create a game plan. In addition to objectives, PR campaigns have strategies- essentially the game plan on how to make the objectives possible. The strategies for our work out objective could include joining a gym within 5 miles of your home. Another area you may want to address is obstacles. Come up with responses to obstacles so you will know how to tackle the issue when it comes up, instead of making excuses.
4. Evaluate. Throughout the year, you should measure and evaluate your goals – like a benchmark study in a PR campaign. Are you keeping up with your work out plan or are you slacking off because your work out is boring? This will help you recognize what is working and what needs adjustments in your plan. Also, at the end of the year look back on your resolutions and take time to reflect on your progress throughout the year! Reflecting will help you gain insight and prepare you for when you make goals next year.
I believe setting too many new year’s resolutions could set you up for failure by being overwhelmed. Instead of only setting new year’s goals, I would set monthly goals – similar to the Happiness Project – focusing on one area each month.
Good luck with your new year’s resolutions!