Why You Should Focus on Only One New Goal This New Year


Travel with me to the act of goal setting.

When it comes to change, the new calendar year sets the stage for opportunity. It’s a logical time to put the past behind and not only look ahead to the future but also to take action today.

New Year’s resolutions come and go, but how many people actually stick to them? I recently read that only  8% of those who make resolutions actually achieve them. That’s not a very promising success rate, is it? As I scrolled through my Facebook feed this weekend, there were a lot of well-intentioned posts of amazing ideas for implementing change in your life this year. Hey, I even posted one that I liked myself, so I’m not judging. Just observing.

Inspiration is good. Motivation is necessary. Starting points are vital. But what about the actual achievement? Will these ideas carry past the first day, the first month—or maybe, just maybe, past the first season of the new year? I’m not so sure.

As I mentioned last post, I am not a big fan of setting New Year’s resolutions—but I am a huge fan of setting new goals any day of the year. Embracing change and implementing growth are important for all of us. Every moment is a chance to choose a new direction, start over, achieve a new goal, and to find a walkable path of success in any area of your life (whether it’s a freshly trodden one, one you’ve already embarked upon, or even one you’re backtracking down to make improvements).

With that being said, I heard a commentary this morning that mentioned opting for only one goal or resolution to focus on increases your likelihood for successful achievement significantly. The more resolutions you aspire to in one given moment (in this case, the new year), the lower your percentage of success in any of them. I think it’s a case of good intentions and the best laid plans of mice and men… or something like that.

So, why not just choose one important goal to focus on? The most important thing you want to change, accomplish, or achieve (or whatever the applicable word is in your particular situation)?

I think it sounds pretty reasonable and takes a little of the pressure off ourselves as time marches on, resolutions fade, and the busyness and normalcy of life resumes for all of us in the coming days, weeks and months.

I always have a constant barrage of things I’d like to improve upon in my life and things that really need to be improved upon in my life. It’s exhausting, actually. And while I’ll continually strive to be mindful of them and make decisions to change for the better every chance I get, I am only setting one big, life-changing goal at a time to focus upon right now. Because decisions happen, goals don’t. Goals require more intentional thought, planning and implementation. I’m choosing one achievable goal that requires me to be accountable, to be disciplined, to be innovative and to be leveling upward.

For me, that is more than enough of a challenge as I seek to balance all of life’s other daily, unrelenting requirements in my roles as an individual, a professional, a writer, a wife, a mother, a sister, a daughter, a friend, and all of the other labels that apply here.

And, well, we’ll see how that one-goal theory and approach goes when it comes to measurable success. Stay tuned…

So, what about you? Are you setting multiple goals or just putting a laser-focus on one big change this year? I’d really love to hear what you’ve got planned for today, tomorrow and for the whole of  2017. Best wishes!


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