Tips to Reaching Goals

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2011 Internet Marketing Advent Calendar This is an entry in our daily Internet Marketing Advent Calendar series. Each day your favorite marketing elves will focus on a new topic to get your internet marketing in order before the start of the new year.

Yesterday I completed my 2011 New Year’s Resolution!

Did you have a resolution this year? Did you complete it? Are you thinking about a new resolution for next year?

Jenika Running 5kLast year, right around this time, I resolved that in 2011 I would start running again. I had gotten out of my normal work out routine and I knew I needed to do something that would be more of a long-term solution, so I committed to completing one 5k each month for the entire year.

I was nervous about this resolution because it was a year-long commitment; it felt big. But I started sharing my resolution with my friends and my family and most everyone seemed supportive. There were a few people who thought I was crazy and I am sure thought I would do it for a couple of months and then just stop. But it was also those people who gave me a little extra fire, like I had something to prove.

I quickly signed up for my first 5k in January so I couldn’t change my mind. I showed up and I finished. I felt good about that because I knew that I had already started reaching my goal. My time wasn’t the best and I walked a lot of it, but I had completed a 5k!

It’s like starting anything, whether you want to start using social media or start a blog, sometimes you just have to start. Then once you’ve started you can assess what you need to do to get better.

If you’re going to set some goals next year here are some things I that I learned that might be helpful:

  • You need support. You need to have other people know what your goals are and believe in you. It’s hard to do it alone. If it weren’t for the familiar faces at the finish line or my running buddies I may not have pushed myself as hard. If you are setting goals for you and your team; make sure everyone is all on the same page.
  • You need milestones. This particular resolution made it a bit easier to have milestones; I counted each month as a milestone. You can’t set a general goal, it needs to be specific and you need to understand when you’ll check in to assess where you are in accordance to the finish line. So if your goal is to have more revenue in 2012, decide how much more money you want to make and what dates you will check in to review whether you are on your mark or not.
  • It’s a mental game. Just like most goals, it does require work to get there, but what I realized is that your head can sometimes be your biggest downfall. Maybe you’re not getting where you want fast enough or have had a fallback and then your brain does this, “Well, you’re failing or have already failed, so what’s the point with carrying on?” Most of the time this is when our New Year’s Resolutions fizzle out. But this is when you need to fight back and remember why you made that goal in the first place. Just like the end of a year marks a fresh start, remember that so does the end of a day. Sometimes I would get down on myself for not having the time to run between each monthly race and even during races sometimes I just wanted to stop and walk. But I remembered that I made this goal for a reason and that I had people that believed in me and it pushed me to carry on.
  • Be proud of each step. Yesterday wasn’t the first time this year that I allowed myself to be proud of what I accomplished. I allowed myself to be proud every time I finished a race and completed a milestone. I was proud of myself the first time I ran the entire race without walking or when I beat my best time. It’s the small victories that led me to finishing my last race yesterday. Don’t wait until you have “succeeded” to be proud of yourself; be proud each time you make better decisions that will help you get closer to reaching your goal.
  • You have to believe. There’s no point in making a goal for something that you don’t believe will be accomplished. You have to believe in yourself or, if you’re setting goals for your team, you have to believe in them. At the end of the day, I didn’t make the resolution for anyone else but myself, I needed to be my biggest supporter and I needed to believe that I could do it.

Are you thinking about your new year’s resolutions? What goals do you want to accomplish next year? Whatever they are, whether they are in business or personal goals, take into account the tips I noted above; stay committed and determined and be assured that you will complete your resolution. Good luck!

Enjoy more from our Internet Marketing Advent Calendar series!