Setting resolutions is a great practice. Whenever you resolve to build a better mind, body, or soul, setting a goal puts you on the path towards accomplishing it.

But how do you make resolutions that stick? How do you set goals that are ambitious but achievable?

You make them SMART.

What are “SMART” resolutions?
“SMART” is a tried and true system for setting and achieving goals and resolutions. Whether you’re using it in your personal or professional life, it’s effective because of how it brings structure to your goal setting.

Specific

Your resolutions should be clearly defined. Instead of saying, “I want to meet my fitness goals,” make a more concrete statement like “I want to increase my weights from 10 lbs. to 15 lbs. a rep.”

Measurable

Create your resolutions so that you can measure them and see the progress that will ultimately help keep you moving towards the end goal.
For example, rather than “I want to get stronger,” try “I want to do 10 pull-ups.”

Achievable

This one is particularly important: your resolutions should be realistic for your life. If you set unachievable resolutions, you will not just fail to meet them but risk turning yourself off the process of self-improvement altogether.
Challenge yourself, but also make sure you have the tools you need to keep progressing.

Relevant

Your resolutions should be meaningful to you, and only you. Don’t get caught up in making resolutions that you feel you have to make or because your friends are all doing it.
Choosing something that you personally value will ensure that you stay inspired throughout the process.

Timely

Lastly, make sure your resolution is timely. Setting a resolution for twenty years from now may strike you as visionary, but it’s a sure-fire way to ensure that nothing gets achieved in the short term.
Consider what’s currently going on in your life, what you need to do to get towards your resolution and what might hold you back. Then, set a reasonable deadline for yourself.
Most importantly, stick to that deadline!

Make your resolutions SMART!
Make your next, and every resolution a SMART one. You’ll soon find yourself well equipped to succeed, whether it’s a new year or simply the time for a new you.