Happy New Year & Making Resolutions

Happy New Year !

For many people it is the major “goal setting” time of the year – often called making resolutions.

People often see resolutions as different than goal setting, but I think they are the same in many ways.

Making New Year’s resolutions can be fun or it can be disastrous.  Many people become disheartened, discouraged, and even distraught after making and then breaking their New Year’s resolutions.

Here is how to avoid the downside of making resolutions.

  1. Make achievable goals.  Don’t simply say, “I will stop smoking on January 1st,” or “I non-smoking-2497308_640am going to drop twenty pounds,” or “I am going to get straight A’s by the end of the semester.”   Think about the steps you can take to get there, and make these separate, achievable resolutions.  There is no sense in setting yourself up for a fall.  Also, with a step-by-step plan, you have done the “legwork” necessary to get to the end. You know what you need to do.
  2. Write down your resolutions. Keep the list somewhere that you can access it frequently and check off the steps you made (note above). Writing things down seems to make them more tangible – more real.  Also, the act of writing out your goals allows you a chance to “think” about how you will make it happen.  It is easy for anyone to simply say or imagine becoming the next major movie star or adventurous astronaut, etc.  These are dreams until the plan is put into action.  Make it real!
  3. Jot down the positive aspects that you will receive when you reach your goal.  You need some motivators to keep you going.  For example, when you are not smoking – or even reducing those cigarettes, you won’t cough as much, you will have more energy and time to commit to more positive activities, etc.  When you lose the weight, you will fit into the clothes you’ve wanted to buy (or retrieve from the back of the closet), and you will feel more healthy and alive. Improved grades school-2.jpgcan get you into the advanced class, or into the college of your choice, and/or into the career you really want.
  4. Don’t let “slip ups” ruin your resolutions. Whenever you try something new, you are bound to have a few bumps in the road.  If that next test comes back with a C- on it, don’t despair, but do take steps to rectify the situation.  If you take a puff from another cigarette, or maybe a few at a party, don’t give up for another whole year! Get back on track and begin “working” your plan again.  (If you don’t have a plan, please refer back to step 1.) Recall how good it felt to make that resolution in the first place.  You can have that feeling again.  Pull out your list, see where you might have stumbled, and refresh your memory about the positive aspects you will get once you reach the ultimate goal. You will become re-energized to start again.
  5. Be positive.  Don’t keep thinking of the ways you will fail to achieve your resolutions.  Stay positive, think positively, and act in a positive direction.  Always focus on moving forward and taking the necessary steps.  If you need to revamp your plan – that’s fine.  Put in a few extra steps that will help you make those New Year’s goals a reality!

Of course, I would be remiss if I did not mention the obvious way to avoid the downside of making New Year’s resolutions – don’t make them.  You don’t HAVE to make resolutions.  It isn’t a law or rule.  For some people, it would be best not to make them.  You decide what works best for you.  Just remember, that the points mentioned above also apply to goal setting which I think most people should do at various times throughout the year.

So – Have a Happy New Year and if you decide to make New Year’s Resolutions, do so in a responsible way.  🙂

Have a safe holiday – enjoy yourself – and look forward to all of 2018.

Website: www.tutoringcentral.com

Video:  Happy New Year

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Goal Setting

Well, it has been a while since I wrote a blog entry.  I have been focusing on getting my YouTube channel going and a new Paragraph Writing course that should soon be ready to send out to students.

I will keep you updated!

For the moment, I want to write a little bit about Goal Setting.

Goal setting is an excellent idea.

If done properly, it can be a real motivator and help you attain the things you want in school and in life.

Done improperly, goal setting can be frustrating and counter-productive.  In other words, you might be wasting your time!

Here are a few tips for setting goals:

  1.  Set realistic goals There is absolutely no sense in setting goals that are not attainable within a reasonable time frame.  You will only frustrate yourself.  Now, you can have long-term goals which are larger – and if your goal is really really big – let’s call those dreams.
  2. Write down your goals.  Keeping a written record will help you stay focused.  Keep your list of goals (short-term and long-term) in a place you can access frequently.
  3. Long-term goals should have short-term goals attached.  Maybe you want to become a famous chef with your own television show, cookbooks, and fans around the globe.  That’s fine (perhaps slightly in the “dream” category, but that’s okay), but how are you going to get there?   The short-term goals are the path to this ultimate achievement.

If you set realistic, attainable goals for the near future, you will be able to “check off” the steps you have taken to reaching those longer and larger goals.

This will make you feel empowered and ever more motivated to keep moving in the right direction.

A lot of students think they should not bother putting too much effort into their next essay or their next test because on previous occasions they haven’t achieve an A+.

Well, that is no reason not to set more realistic goals.  If your math grade last year / semester / term was a C-, then an A+ is not a reasonable goal.  I’m not saying that it is entirely unattainable; however, setting such a large goal at first will likely be a disappointment.

Set yourself a goal of getting a C+ on the next test, perhaps a slightly longer goal of getting into the B’s for the term or year (if still early in the session) and work toward that.

Once the goal is set to raise your grade – set a few goals that will help you get there.  For example, you can plan an hour each night to focus on that particular course – review notes (check) – practice a few questions (check) – look ahead to the next unit (check) – ask questions of the teacher or other students (check) – etc.

Each time you check off the steps you made each day and each week, you will feel yourself moving in the right direction and “getting somewhere.”

So, don’t give up on setting goals and making an effort to reach them, but DO be sensible in your approach.

You can set yourself up for success!

Here is a link to my YouTube video on goal setting.  Don’t forget to subscribe, like, or leave a comment if you wish.  My channel is just getting started – lot’s more to come.  (Yes, I am setting goals, too.)

YouTube Video: Goal Setting

Website:  www.tutoringcentral.com