The New Year is upon us and so is the time to start defining your Resolutions. But since many New Year’s Resolutions are broken within the first month, how can you achieve your dating and relationship goals to ensure they are successfully met and not sabotaged along the way? Here are a couple pointers to pave the way toward accomplishing those love-life dreams without a hitch!
The first step is to define your vision for your ideal partner and relationship when developing your dating goals for the New Year. What are the qualities you’re seeking, and of those characteristics, which of those needs are negotiable versus deal-breakers. This then becomes an excellent screening tool when meeting potential dating partners. Break out your “inner child” and create a collage or mobile representing this vision by cutting out words, pictures, and symbols from magazines that resonate with these desires and affixing them to a big poster board. Post this “Dating Vision Board” in a location of your home where you’ll view it every day and ask yourself each morning, “What will I do today that will take me one step closer to achieving this particular vision?” And then commit yourself to doing it.
The next step is to pick one specific goal and break it down into objectives involving behavioral “what-I’m-going-to-do” tasks. A favorite technique is to brainstorm and list all the different things you could do to accomplish your stated goal. Then draw a ladder on a piece of paper and prioritize all your “to do” items from low-level to high-level risk or difficulty. Arrange and write each behavioral objective on the rungs of the ladder and begin your journey up the ladder beginning at the first rung. And then climb your way to success once you’ve mastered each rung one at a time!
A similar approach can be taken with those already partnered. The two of you can discuss your own “Relationship Vision” by identifying your ideal union. It’s always a fun exercise for couples to create the aforementioned vision board/collage together as it facilitates important dialogue about each partner’s needs and dreams in the context of a playful shared activity. You just might learn something new about your partner along the way! This shared vision then becomes your path in which goals and objectives will be created along the way to realize your legacy as a couple.
Another favorite technique is to have what I call a “Relationship Pow-Wow” to ensure your goals don’t get forgotten or misguided. You and your partner would establish a ritual of having a “couple’s meeting” at a regularly scheduled time and frequency in which you would discuss your relationship and goals status. It’s a time to talk about what’s going well, what’s not going so well, your dreams and goals, your progress with stated goals, etc. With this becoming a structured part of your lifestyle, it will always be ascertained that your relationship is being attended to and there will be a consistent forum for the discussion about your relationship quality-of-life. The Pow-Wow is a great way to stay accountable to your relationship goals, so stay true to the process and don’t skip any meetings!
Additional Tips for Your Relationship Goals:
* Make sure your goals are in alignment with your vision, values, passions, and life purpose.
* Keep your goals SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, & Timely)
* Make your goals public. There’s something about telling someone of your intentions that helps motivate us to stick with it when the going gets tough. Hire a life coach!
* Build in incentives and/or consequences for meeting your objectives along the way for motivation enhancement.
All the best on embracing your potential! Go get ‘em, you’ll be great!