Dear CDA Families,
I hope your new year is off to a great start! What a year 2020 was for many of us, right? Normally the start of a new year brings excitement for what is ahead, refreshed and ready for goal setting and planning. I read a quote the other day that said, “If you don’t challenge yourself, you will never realize what you can become,” author unknown.
The purpose of having goals, planning them strategically, and taking action gives you the desire to make healthier changes and develop skills and habits with greater success. They provide a sense of focus, purpose, and motivation to become a better version of yourself. As with adults, setting goals with your children can also provide some valuable life skills, such as responsibility and commitment.
Despite the uncertainty of 2021, I encourage you to think about what goal(s) you and/or your family will achieve and how you will achieve them. Here are some tips to help you:
- Write down the goal that you want to achieve this year.
- Write the action steps on how you will achieve the goal.
- Post your goal and action steps where you can see and track them daily.
- Take action.
A tool that I have found helpful in setting both short and long-term goals is the SMART Goal system. S.M.A.R.T. is an acronym for: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound:
- Specific: What is the goal you are trying to achieve? It should be clear and specific.
- Measurable: How can you measure progress and know if you have successfully completed your goal?
- Achievable: Do you have the skills and resources to achieve the goal?
- Relevant: Why is this goal important to you? What effect will completing this goal have for you and/or your family?
- Time-bound: When will you complete your goal and is it a realistic time frame?
Answering the “Who, What, When, Where, and Why” questions and breaking down the action steps to fit your realistic lifestyle and family structure is a great strategy for making your goals a reality. Also, keep in mind that goals are supposed to help and make you better, and sometimes that may be stepping out of your comfort zone. However, don’t allow them to overwhelm or stress you out. Instead, find ways to make them fun and enjoyable. For example, my goal is to lose 25 pounds and become more physically active by November 2021. One of my action steps will be to exercise (which is my least favorite thing to do), however, I enjoy dancing and site seeing, so I will implement those activities as part of my exercise routine.
Last, but not least, it is also helpful to have a network of support from family and trusted friends during the goal process. Ask if they will support and hold you accountable in achieving your goals. Remember, goals are not achieved by hoping they just happen, they are achieved when you have a plan and take action.
Please feel free to reach out to the Family Resources Team for assistance and support with your goal setting. We can help you with planning, resources, and referrals to help you achieve your goals. Our hope is that you and your family thrive this year, whatever that may look like, we wish you and your family an excellent 2021. Happy planning!
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