New Beginnings: Setting Appropriate Expectations when Goal Setting

Updated: Mar 23

The New Year often brings times of hope and excitement. We have this sudden urge to move mountains and accomplish the goals we have been brushing off. How do we manage our expectations appropriately so we are not left disappointed at the end of January because we didn't meet our desired expectations?


SET REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS


It's not rocket science. The way to succeed is by creating small short-term goals that will eventually lead us to our main expectation of success. For example, if your goal is to lose weight or get in shape. Set your sights on an attainable goal. "I will aspire to lose 2 pound a week". This is a realistic goal, that way at the end of the week you can feel good that you have successfully accomplished something.

If your main expectation in this case is to loose 15 pounds, then you can calculate that it will take approximately 2 months to loose 15 pounds (just in time for spring).


SHARE YOUR GOALS & CREATE A PERSONAL PLAN


It is helpful to have a partner who shares a similar goal. Connect with your friends and family and ask what their goals are. You may be surprised that they share a similar goal. You can work as a team or have regular check ins that will help keep you both on track. Just remember that you both need to set your short term success goals realistic for your individual situation. Avoid comparing yourself to your partner. Create a personalize plan that suits your life now and take into consideration the curve balls life will throw at you.


ACCEPT YOUR MISSTEPS AS PART OF A SUCCESSFUL JOURNEY


The journey in attempting to attain your goal is just as important as achieving your goal if not even more valuable. If you have a misstep, make a mistake or backtrack its okay. FORGIVE YOURSELF and move on. Maybe you needed that misstep to succeed in the end.


TAKE JOY IN THE PROCESS


We often want to rush to the finish line and forget to STOP AND SMELL THE ROSES. This is your reminder to slow down. You will be more successful in attaining your goal if you take your time and follow the three easy steps mentioned above. Make sure the goal you have in mind is something you actually desire. not just a pressure you are feeling from another. Do what is best for you and worry less about other peoples views. Our journey throughout life is supposed to be enjoy. Make this goal setting process enjoyable.


Written by: Tyfanny Ross, BSW, MSW, RSW