Each year about this time, we see people creating extensive resolution lists. However, should people be making resolutions or setting goals? A resolution is defined as a firm decision to do or not do something. Based on this definition, would it be better to set yearly goals rather than resolutions? Goals are an aim or desired result. When polled several months into each new year, it is found that many people that had resolutions have already stopped working on toward their resolutions. Often these resolutions are seen as pass or fail items. On the other hand, goals are more universally recognized as something we identify and work towards.
When goals are set, most people actually plan, prepare and set actionable steps to achieve their goals. I think we have heard that goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timed (SMART). According to a study conducted by Michigan State University, those that set SMART goals had a 76% success rate of achieving their goals.
When we take a look at the success rate of resolutions, it is considerably less. Forbes reported that 80% of resolutions fail. This means that resolutions are only successful 20% of the time. One of the major reasons that resolutions fail is because they are often too broad, failing to include any actionable detail. Make your own decision based on the facts. Should you be setting yearly resolutions or yearly goals?