Thinking About Your 2018 Goals? Do This First

 In Focusing on the positive, Goals

Are you starting to think about resolutions for the new year? This past week, I was working on my goals for 2018 with a friend. But before we started making our list for next year, we decided to take some time to write down and celebrate our accomplishments from this past year. I have to admit, I was ready to start focusing on 2018, so I had to remind myself how important it is to acknowledge our achievements. It was not a waste of time. 

Not only that, it’s hard for me to remember all that happened in 2017. That’s why it’s helpful to do this with a friend. Things on her list triggered more ideas for mine. Pretty soon I had an impressive set of things I’d accomplished that truly made me feel excited and proud.

The other great benefit of making my list with a friend is that after we shared our lists with each other, we took a few minutes to celebrate and cheer each other on. Research shows that taking the time to savor and share our achievements can boost feel-good chemicals in our bodies like serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin.

Here are a few reasons why making a list of our accomplishments is important;

  • We tend to lament all the things we didn’t get done and still need to do, instead of remembering the many accomplishments we have achieved.
  • We feel a sense of pride and self-confidence when we revisit our achievements, giving us more motivation to tackle the next project.
  • Cultivating the positive emotions connected with celebrating our achievements not only makes us happier but improves our resilience and overall wellbeing.

I have to admit, I was feeling more optimistic and motivated about my 2018 goals after spending some time remembering, sharing, and savoring 2017.  Try it for yourself. I recommend connecting with a trusted friend and making it a celebration.


Tina Hallis, Ph.D., is a positivity speaker, trainer, and founder of The Positive Edge, a company dedicated to helping organizations and individuals create a more positive attitude, a more positive culture, and positive results.

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