3 Steps to Achieve Long-Term Goals for the New Year

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January 5, 2018

Stay focused and celebrate progress to stay on track

Now that we are a few weeks into January, it's time for a pulse-check on the goals you had set for yourself for the new year. If you've managed to stay motivated and focused, kudos to you! If you've started to fall off the path, or just haven't decided what your goals are yet, don't despair.

Setting goals can seem simple at first, but creating achievable and inspiring goals requires more time and thought. Here's where to begin.

1. Quality Over Quantity

It is easy to fall victim to setting too many goals for yourself, and then becoming overwhelmed and unable to fully accomplish most of them. Instead, limit yourself to one to three long-term goals that you are most passionate about.

Next, split your long-term goals up into smaller daily or weekly objectives. This allows you to identify what immediate next steps to take that will put you on the path toward your larger goal, while not becoming discouraged by the long road ahead. By pacing your progress, you're less likely to become overwhelmed by the task, and more likely to achieve the bigger goal.

2. Monitor and Celebrate Your Progress

What's the point in setting a long-term goal if you're not sure what success looks like? This is what happens when individuals fail to measure their progress along the way. Don't sweat small setbacks, but do be sure to set some goalposts and celebrate small successes. By reflecting regularly, you're able to see where you're excelling and where you should take corrective action before you fall too far behind. This can also serve as an extremely effective motivator.

For example, if your goal is to start a new career by next year, each of these might be measurable steps toward that goal:

  • Researching what programs are available that can provide you with the necessary career training and their admissions requirements
  • Scheduling a personal tour of campus
  • Completing the FAFSA in a timely manner

3. Remember Your Motivating Factors

Whatever your reasons are for making changes for your future - providing for your family, gaining new skills or chasing a dream job - keep your motivation top of mind. Creating a visual reminder via a physical or virtual goal board can be extremely effective when obstacles arise.

Our brains attach emotion and feelings to visuals. That's why we can become very motivated by the right imagery. Whether you create a full goal board or just have a photo of a graduation cap, your children or another powerful image, keep this nearby to serve as your constant reminder as to why you're pursuing this goal in the first place.

January is full of fresh motivation. Our Admissions Team is available to talk to you about your opportunities and what programs might be right for you. At Dawn Career Institute, we're committed to helping you achieve your career and personal goals.

Set yourself up for success this year by calling us at 1-800-490-9135 or requesting more information.