As the New Year begins, people commonly set New Year’s Resolutions, and it’s easy to get caught up in thinking that you need to do more, be more, or achieve more in order to be successful:
Do any of those sound familiar?! While it’s great to have ambition and strive for self-improvement, often the resolutions set are too ambitious and too vague to be effective. If you set yourself goals that aren’t realistic, are too difficult to achieve, or don’t take into account your current lifestyle, you are setting yourself up for failure. This can lead to frustration and a lack of motivation to continue working towards your goal.
Almost everyone working in education will be familiar with SMART Targets (Smart, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound). As much as these are great ways for planning targets at school or work, it’s also important to be SMART with the goals you set yourself.
What can you do instead of making ambitious resolutions? We recommend setting goals for yourself throughout the year, rather than just at the start of the year. This allows you to be more flexible and adjust your goals as needed. It’s also a good idea to focus on making small, incremental changes rather than trying to overhaul your entire life at once! Having specific and measurable goals so you can track your progress and know when you’ve achieved them, taking them one small step at a time will mean you are more likely to stick to them and see positive, lasting results.
While it’s important to strive for self-improvement, it’s also crucial to remember that the most important person in your life is YOU. And as you embark on this new year, it’s okay to be the “same you” – to prioritise your mental wellbeing and to believe in yourself.
Mental wellbeing is crucial for our overall health and happiness. It is not always easy to prioritise our mental health, especially in a world that often values productivity and achievement above all else. But it is important to remember that taking care of your mental health is just as important as taking care of your physical health.
So, as you start this new year, maybe the goal should be to set aside time for activities that promote your mental wellbeing. Take time to build your own self-belief. It’s easy to fall into the trap of self-doubt, but it is important to remember that you are worthy and capable and to believe in yourself and your abilities. This might mean setting realistic goals for yourself and celebrating the small victories along the way.
This New Year, instead of trying to completely change who you are, focus on self-acceptance and self-belief. Embrace the person you are right now, and work towards becoming the best version of yourself at your own pace.