The New Goal-Setting Resolution For 2021

Why making plans for when things don't go as planned is a New Year’s resolution worth keeping.



We all know, in the back of our minds, that some big things in life are ultimately out of our control. But when those out-of- our-hands changes come, it’s natural to look at our goals and plans and wonder if there’s any real point in making them in the first place? 

But there really is a point to making plans. Just because things may not turn out the way we thought they would doesn’t mean we shouldn’t tell ourselves what we desire in advance. But how can we finally embrace this truth and feel less thrown off when plans change – while still finding happiness and making progress? It’s about practicing how to still dream while loosening our grip on ‘how’ those dreams might come together.

Refresh your Goal Setting Process with these 3 mindset shifts instead:

Aim for inner growth vs. outward accomplishments

Goals that relate to your inner wellbeing – things like how you relate to your emotions, your spirituality or the quality of your relationships should be the new focus. Not only do you have more control over these aspects of your life, but improvement can happen without going outside or spending a lot of money. The best part? When your inner relationship with yourself improves, you will naturally be more motivated to reach other external goals.

Take it easy on yourself if you miss a ‘deadline’

It always helps to have a time-bound deadline when you’re goal setting because it allows you to focus on your purpose. But what if something unexpected happens, and you don’t reach your goal? That’s OK! Re-adjust your deadline for another time period. This helps build resilience by recognizing that if you miss a deadline, you can start over with a new one, instead of giving up altogether. Unexpected events that impact your plans are not a reflection on your abilities.

Readjusted goals are a reflection of life, not of your value as a person

Even though I just explained that you can build resilience by not giving up, you can also build resistance by knowing when to quit or say “not right now”. Despite the infinite hiccups of this year – weddings canceled, trips postponed, jobs unfinished and businesses closing this year – each and every person involved in those unrealized plans is a fully worthy, loveable person. You’re worthy because you exist, – accomplished goals are just a bonus. No matter what happens, you’re not a failure.

Ready to dive in with your ‘flexible planning’? 

Here are four journal prompts to motivate yourself to start goal-setting the New Way for 2021:

  1. How do I want to feel in the next week, 30 days, 90 days?
  2. What actions can I take that will help me feel this way? 
  3. If I only got one thing done for the rest of the year (or in 2021) and that was enough – what would I choose?
  4. What goal am I still giving myself a hard time about not reaching this year? How can I let myself off the hook?

Remember – we’re all in this together, re-adjusting to our new normal one day at a time. 

For more on how to start journaling, check out this article.

Rachael Lynn

Rachael Lynn

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