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Have you ever set a goal, with enthusiasm and intention to nail it (because after all, you’re ambitious, driven and motivated, right?) only to fall off the goal-getting wagon a few months, weeks or even days later?

You’re not alone. According to a study by the Statistic Brain Research Institute, 92 percent of people who set goals in the New Year never actually achieve them.

Is that just New Year’s goals? No! Goals set anytime of year are easily forgotten once the “newness” wears off and the daily distractions of life and business take over.

So what can you do to set yourself up for success?

It’s simple really. Follow these 5 simple (yet powerful) goal setting rules to reach your goals every time!

According to a study by the Statistic Brain Research Institute, 92 percent of people who set goals in the New Year never actually achieve them.

Rule 1: Write Your Goals Down

What is it that you’d like to achieve? Your goal should be specific and measurable, challenging yet achievable. You’re brain loves a good challenge, but will find ways to avoid things that it finds too difficult or exhausting, so finding that right mix is key.


Rule 2: Enlist a Coach or Accountability Partner

Enlisting an accountability partner or coach to hold you accountable is scientifically shown to increase your chances of success by 65 percent. That’s because we are wired, neurologically, to “fit in” with our tribe, which means, we don’t want to disappoint others who are counting on us.


Rule 3: Meet with your Coach or Accountability Partner Regularly

Schedule regular appointments with your accountability partner or coach to discuss progress, work through mental blocks and barriers you’re experiencing and strategize an action plan to keep you moving forward and making progress toward your goal. As simple as it seems, meeting with an accountability partner (or coach) will help you become 95% more successful at achieving your goals!


Rule 4: Reward Yourself

Celebrate your success—every day. When your brain anticipates the possibility of receiving a reward, it releases a neurotransmitter, dopamine, to motivate you to take action to go get the reward. This is how your brain is wired to seek pleasure. When you first set a goal, you’re excited at the anticipation of reaching your goal (aka getting a reward) and so dopamine spikes, motivating you into action mode. But then. . . when you’re just grinding away (with no rewards in sight) the brain loses sight of the “reward” and stops releasing dopamine and your motivation dies off.

By celebrating your small successes—from reaching a milestone or checking off an item on your task list for the day—your brain registers the win as a reward and starts to look for the next opportunity for another “reward”, thus continuing the release of the drug that keeps you motivated.


Rule 5: Track Your Progress and Try to Be Flexible

You cannot measure what you cannot see. Tracking your progress is essential for staying on track and reaching your goal. But, there may be times when you get off track. That’s okay! Life gets in the way sometimes and we have to make adjustments—adjusting the goal itself, moving the deadline or creating a new plan of action to achieve it.

I have something to support you.

Free Resource

Goal Setting & Action Plan Workbook for Coaches & Consultants

It’s not enough to have an idea in your head (you’ve got plenty of those!), you also need clarity around your vision, a focused strategy and an action plan that will get you there.


Every step you take toward your goal gets you a little closer, and that counts as progress! Don’t be too hard on yourself if things go awry. Instead take an objective look at what caused the detour, take corrective action and get yourself back on track as soon as you can. And give yourself a pat on the back for noticing the misstep and making the necessary corrections—that in itself is a great accomplishment! 

Love you to pieces,

Tonya Rineer xo

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