How to Set Realistic Goals You Can Actually Achieve

How to Set Realistic Goals You Can Actually Achieve

December 21, 2018 Psychotherapy Smith Psychotherapy Associates Stress 0
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As the New Year will be here before we know it yet again, it is worth taking note of the fact that many people use this time of year to set goals for themselves in terms of the ways they can improve their lives for the upcoming year. However, research has been conducted on this topic stating that, based on the sample size of the study, 25% of people broke their New Year’s resolutions within the first week, and the number went up to 80% by the end of February.

So what can you, in conjunction with your mental health counselor, if you are seeing one, do about this situation so that you do not end up falling into this category? In order to avoid these pitfalls, it is vital to begin setting realistic goals that are actually within your reach. For many people, however, this is obviously a struggle, so let’s take a few moments to go into more depth about some proven strategies that are likely to aid you in your goal setting quest.

To Begin With, Take the Time to Write Down or Type Your Goals

One of the most useful and first steps you can take is surprisingly easy. All you have to do is write your goals down or type them out. This may not seem like you are doing very much, but it is actually a very significant act, as writing down a goal makes it more real and present to our minds, which can be fickle and change quickly.

This is a particularly useful step for those who are already in anxiety therapy, as it will allow them to state their goals to their therapist and coordinate with them in a real-time fashion.

Realize You Are Running a Marathon, Not a Sprint

Another important thing to take into account when planning your goals out is that while anything worth achieving takes a significant amount of time, if you spend all of your time focusing on how long things will take, you will never finish.

Think of it this way: do you think people who climb mountains start out at the bottom thinking “It’s going to take me forever to summit this peak?” No, they think “I just need to get 50 feet up today, another 50 tomorrow…” and so on and so forth. Break your overall goal down into milestones and you will find yourself getting a lot further along than if your main focus is on the big picture.

Specify Your Goal to Yourself as Much as Possible

One of the great things about receiving mental health counseling is that it forces you to specify things as much as possible, so that you know what you are trying to accomplish, in great detail. This means that if you are trying to lose weight, don’t just say “I’m going to lose some weight,” but instead say “I want to lose 20 pounds.” That way, your goal has a definitive endpoint.

For more information on how mental health counseling can help you effectively set goals, please contact Smith Psychotherapy Associates through their website today.