Goals vs Resolutions

The Battle of the New Year

The feelings crashed over my like a wave at the beach: FAILURE! This describes the way I was feeling recently when I was reviewing the list of goals I made last year. I felt like a failure because out of a list of 10 goals, I only accomplished a couple of them and that is giving myself a lot of grace. Seeing this truth and accepting it is hard. My natural inclination is to deny and hide. To make excuses and give myself a pass. This year I didn’t want to do that, so I had to bear through the feelings of failure and deal with some hard truths. Reviewing the reasons why I didn’t reach my goals helped me to see a couple of insights that may help us with our goals for this year.

Good Goals Take Work

  • Learning to write a good goal that you can accomplish takes work. Specific goals that are actionable and measurable are hard to write. We often just write down our dreams or our hopes as a goal and we can never see if we are truly making progress. These goals make us feel good, but do not get us any closer to reality. We need our goals to be something we have worked hard to craft, so we know exactly what we are going after.
  • I have written countless goals that sounded great but brought me nowhere. The thing that has really helped me recently is Michael Hyatt’s “Best Year Ever” Program. He has recently written a book about it “Your Best Year Ever” and I highly recommend it. The book is practical and can help you really focus on your goals and see them accomplished.

Good Goals Bring Discomfort

  • The hard truth of my failure with many of my goals last year was the fact that to accomplish them I would have to move into the discomfort zone. The discomfort zone is where we change what we do and try new things. We become honest about ourselves and how we function and change the areas we need to. This is hard for us because we often live in a world of self-delusion. The saying, “We judge others by their actions, but we judge ourselves by our intentions,” is a classic example of self-delusion.
  • Self-delusion keeps us from change because we don’t really think we are “That bad.”  Change is easy to point out for others, but hard to do for ourselves. Allowing others to speak into our lives is one of the best remedies for self-delusion, but it takes courage. Being honest about our own laziness and sense of entitlement takes courage. We can either be courageous and move to the discomfort zone, or we can binge watch more Netflix and hide behind a pretend world of comfort.

Resolutions take little effort and make us feel better when we write them.
Goals take a lot of work and if we are courageous enough to do them will change us for the better.
Which one will you do this year?