Author: Steve Shallenberger

A New Year is always energizing. There is a feeling of excitement and renewal–it is a new beginning and an opportunity to improve ourselves. However, many people find it challenging to maintain that enthusiasm throughout the year–especially when it comes to goals. In fact, only a tiny fraction of us keep our resolutions; University of Scranton research suggests that just 8% of people achieve their New Year’s goals.

I want you to be a part of that 8%! One way to do that is to start small– to focus on one small goal you can accomplish. I say start small so you can build the courage and confidence to achieve more. Start small, don’t give up, and be consistent until you’re ready to take on more.

My friend Stephen Covey wrote this a few years back:

“I also suggest that you work on your goal on a weekly basis. For instance, if you are setting a goal to reduce your sugar intake, set a goal to reduce the number of sugar-rich drinks you consume during the week. If you are in the habit of drinking soda pop everyday or several times a week, decide at the beginning of the week how many drinks you will reduce in your diet. If you go too fast and eliminate all your drinks, you may just fail at it because you are not emotionally, mentally or physically prepared to do so. So start small. Make a promise and keep it…make a promise and keep it. And soon you will enlarge your strength, confidence and capabilities to discipline yourself to achieve other goals.

 Many years ago, I went on a sugar fast with a group of students. You can’t believe how difficult it was at first but as we achieved small victories, our will power and passion for achieving our goal became stronger and stronger. We actually found strength in saying “no” to sugar because we felt an inner strength, a strength that inspired us to grow our confidence and abilities to grow our character, our sense of who we wanted to be.”

As you work on your goal, remember that a huge help can be sharing your goal with a person you admire. At the end of the year, you can report back to that person on your progress. This accountability can be a great motivator to many of us!

I wish you a wonderful to 2015 and that it can be one of your BEST years ever.