Baltimore — Keeping the same excitement and ambition you stepped into the new year with can be tricky once the year picks up. Winter break is over, the homework starts coming in and life happens.
Here are a few tips to keep you on track throughout the year and keep your motivation steady throughout 2024.
Understand your goals
It is easy to make a laundry list of goals and resolutions, but understanding the difference between short-term and long-term goals will help you accomplish them in the desired timeframe. Also, having large lists without breaking them down can get a bit overwhelming and may lead to you abandoning them altogether.
Each month, make a few goals you know you can accomplish while working towards a larger goal. Also, try to prioritize your goals throughout the year. For example, if you want to read 20 books this year, make a smaller goal to read about two books a month, and eventually, you will meet and exceed your goal!
Purchase a planner
Investing in a planner is a great way to stay on top of things and have a map of your day, week, and month. If you are not into paper planners, utilize your online calendar; you can even combine calendars on Google. This allows me to see my personal, work and school schedule all in one place. Make sure to block out time for yourself. Other planner apps, such as Structured, help you stay on task and accomplish what you need daily.
Get an accountability buddy
Sometimes, you need an accountability partner, and that is OK. Reach out to a family member or friend who may have a similar goal and ask if you guys can hold each other accountable. My friends and I Facetime during our warm-up at the gym; this makes the gym something to look forward to since we live states away. We catch up while holding each other accountable and working on our fitness goals.
Reward yourself … you deserve it!
Is there a pair of shoes you've been eyeing or a new bracket you want? Reward yourself after finishing goals to keep the excitement and motivation going, even if it's just treating yourself to a scoop of ice cream after studying for a big test. I have my goals and rewards listed in a Google document and I check them off as the year goes on.
Be kind to yourself
Sometimes, things happen, and goals don't need to be met or become delayed. Don't let this deter you from your overall goal. Forgive yourself and reevaluate a new plan to continue on your path. Have bi-monthly check-ins to see where you are and to see what you need to hone in on. This prevents the panic and rush to finish goals in December.
Ariyana Griffin is a graduate student at Morgan State University in Baltimore. She is a California native and a graduate of Clark Atlanta University. Follow her on X: @Ariyanaaganee and Instagram: @ari.yana.g
Edited by Nykeya Woods