Goal Setting

Counting Down My Top 8 Goals for 2018

I’ve never been one for New Year’s resolutions. Why wait a whole year to change something when you could do it today or tomorrow? At least that has always been my frame of mind. But I can see why resolutions are so powerful and so popular. New year, new me, right? Plus, everyone else is doing it, so you have the accountability of millions of people.

Whether we’re setting goals or resolutions for the new year, we have a better chance to succeed if we include three things in our plan: why we’re setting that goal, a system to accomplish that goal, and some kind of accountability. Here are my top 8 goals for 2018 with all three of these things explained.

5 Steps to Achieve Your Goals

When I was in fourth grade, I was responsible for selling a box of chocolate bars for a fundraiser. I tried my best, but I was a ten-year-old Hmong girl with little confidence and no business skills. On the Saturday I was supposed to be selling chocolate, I ended up at the park, eating all the chocolate underneath the shade of a gigantic stone turtle. Don’t ask me how it happened. To this day, I’m still not quite sure. This was the first goal I remember setting, and it failed terribly. I’ve learned a lot about goals and goal setting since fourth grade, and much of what I’ve learned is that achievability depends on a few key steps.

Creating Goals You Actually Want to Achieve

It was a gray USB drive with faded stickers of flowers and rainbows and stars on it. When I plugged it into my computer, I was surprised it still worked. Inside are half a dozen stories I started but never finished. Looking through them reminded me of times when I had so many ideas I couldn’t keep up with them. I would start one story, then get a new idea and start that one and then get another idea. “I just want to finish a novel so that I would know how it felt to finish,” I remember saying to my best friend. After that, no matter how badly I wanted to skip from idea to idea, I made it my goal to finish a novel. A year later, I reached my goal. I learned that finishing a novel felt like getting ice cream and cake on your birthday. It felt like watching your favorite soccer team win the World Cup. Like receiving a hug from someone you love. And that is what I think goal setting is all about. Goals that we associate with positive feelings are goals we actually want to achieve.