How to Set Your New Year’s Resolutions for Success

Whether your new year’s resolutions involve losing weight, quitting a bad habit, or working on your driving fears and driving anxiety, those goals can be set for success or doomed for failure even before you begin. The success or failure of your goals largely depends on how you approach those goals, according to a new study from PsychTests.

Study Details

The study involved data from 9,654 participants who took part in a Goal-Setting Test. Researchers broke down the results into three distinct groups and then analyzed the attitudes, personality and behaviors of members in each group. The groups were:

  • Goal achievers: Those who tend to achieve most or all of the goals they set
  • Moderate achievers: Those who achieve a few goals they set
  • Non-achievers: Those who don’t achieve any goals they set

What Goal Achievers Have in Common

The study found those who tend to achieve most or all of their goals share a slate of common beliefs, attitudes and behaviors that are not as widely shared by those who often fail to hit their targets. Goals achievers tend to:

Recognize the importance of making solid plans for the future, rather than just going wherever the flow of life happens to take them.

  • 78 percent of goal achievers
  • 52 percent of moderate achievers
  • 33 percent of non-achievers

Set appropriate goals, or ones they can actually achieve. Losing 8 pounds in two months is an appropriate goal. Losing 88 pounds in two months is not.

  • 77 percent of goal achievers
  • 49 percent of moderate achievers
  • 14 percent of non-achievers

Refuse to set sights too low, or choosing goals that don’t give them some type of challenge to encourage self-improvement and growth.

  • 78 percent of goal achievers
  • 54 percent of moderate achievers
  • 32 percent of non-achievers

Get started on their goal right away. Those who succeed are typically ready and willing for action, embarking on the steps needed to fulfill their goal as soon as possible. Procrastination appeared to be a major goal killer.

  • 79 percent of goal achievers
  • 54 percent of moderate achievers
  • 29 percent of non-achievers

Plan out exactly how they’ll accomplish their goal. This includes keeping potential obstacles in mind and planning ways to overcome them.

  • 65 percent of goal achievers
  • 52 percent of moderate achievers
  • 39 percent of non-achievers

Break down larger goals into smaller, manageable steps. Instead of simply stating you aim to work on overcoming driving fears and driving anxiety, outline the steps it would take to achieve that end and conquer one step at a time.

  • 74 percent of goal achievers
  • 52 percent of moderate achievers
  • 28 percent of non-achievers

Additional Tactics for Success

A few other tactics are also part of the game plan for those who consistently achieve their goals. These include:

  • Staying motivated by rewarding themselves after hitting milestones
  • Reviewing their progress at regular intervals
  • Remembering to be patient
  • Letting the power of the mind work for them by visualizing goal success
  • Refusing to let self-doubt derail their efforts

You can clearly see what makes goal achievers tick and what propels their goals forward. Keep these tactics in mind the next time you’re setting a goal and you may likewise enjoy your own success.