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5 Steps to Setting Realistic, Attainable Goals and Crushing Them

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Hey Readers! I want to introduce to you, Austin, the blogger at the Daily New Year! I was super excited when he was up for doing a guest post for my website! Check out his tips for setting goals and totally crushing them! If you are also interested in working with me, check out my page about working with me! 

How easy is it to set goals and then totally forget about them! Check out this guest blog post from Daily New Year's Blogger, Austin for 5 steps to creating those realistic, attainable goals!


I’m what I like to call a “goal getter.” I love setting goals, tracking my progress, achieving new things in life, and I love seeing others do the same.

That’s why I’m so impressed with what Elyse is doing with The Savvy Sagittarius blog and her #debtfreeat23 campaign. It’s incredible to see her progress week after week and month after month. She has total focus and discipline.

Goal setting is a passion of mine, and it’s one I want to share with the world. If you’re reading this post, maybe you’re new to setting goals, or you’ve never set a goal before. Or perhaps you feel a sense of disdain for goal setting due to a setback or failure you experienced earlier in your life.

That’s okay!

I’ve met and talked to people at a variety of different stages in their personal development journey. If you’re still with me, I hope it’s because you want to set some goals of your own, and that’s awesome! I want to help you crush them!

Are you ready? Here we go!


1. Write Down Your Goals and WHY You Want to Achieve Them.

I don’t want to bore you with stats, but writing your goals down makes you 42% more likely to achieve them. When I first sat down to write out my goals, I tried to think about my life in the long term. That’s what Elyse is doing on her About page:

   “After everything is paid off, I plan on buying a house and raising a few goats and a few puppies. I can’t wait to live a life full of adventure after I have no payments.”

Before she set out to be debt free on January 1st, 2017, she had a long-term vision of what she wanted her life to look like. If it helps, start there and work backward to create realistic, attainable goals. If you already know what you want your goals to be, write them down in a notebook that you keep with you.

When you do write down your goals, please don’t simply write that you want to make more money. Write something like “I want to become financially independent so that I can retire with peace of mind for myself and my family.” See the difference? Put some meaning into it and define your ‘why.’ If you have a strong why, you can do anything.


2. Set Small Goals by Breaking Down Your Big Goals

Now that you have a list of your desired goals, start breaking them down into smaller, manageable goals. This is helping me to succeed in my reading goal. I’ve never been a big fan of reading, although I’ve always known it’s important. Now that I have a blog of my own, I find that reading fuels my creativity and my writing, so I set out to read twelve books in 2018.

The obvious way to break this goal down would be to read one book per month, but I didn’t stop there. I actually took a reading-speed test and found out how many words per minute I could read. Then, I used that to calculate how long I would have to read each day to meet my goal.

By now you’re probably thinking I’m crazy, but breaking this annual goal down into a daily reading habit has propelled me forward towards achieving my goal, and I know that when I skip a day, I’m 30-60 minutes behind on my reading goal, depending on the size of the book. That adds up!

The smaller you make your goals, the easier they are to achieve. If your ultimate goal is to lose weight, set a goal for getting to the gym each day for a fixed amount of time, hitting a specific calorie target, or both. If your goal is to save your first $1,000, create a budget to help track your spending and your saving.


3. Ask Yourself “How Will I Succeed”

I found this tip to be the most helpful when I first started planning my goals. When you’re setting realistic and attainable goals, it helps to have a bulletproof success plan. You can do this by asking yourself: “How will I succeed?”

Sounds kind of silly, right? I thought so too. But I’m not talking about a simple answer like “I’ll succeed by trying really hard.” Duh.

What I’m talking about is outlining all of the events that would have to happen to ensure your success. This takes time but is practically guaranteed to increase your success rate.

We can use the goal of losing weight again as an example. If your goal were to lose 30 pounds, you would ask yourself “What steps would I have to take to be successful in losing 30 pounds?”

Maybe you can only consume 1200 calories per day for a total of 60 days. Perhaps you have to perform 60 minutes of cardio three days a week with an average heart rate of 170 beats per minute. If you consult a dietitian or some free online tools, you should be able to mathematically figure out what it would take to lose 30 pounds and achieve success.

Not all goals can be achieved using math, but whatever your goal is, you should be able to outline a list of events that should result in a bulletproof action plan for achieving success. Give it a try and see where it takes you.


4. Set Goals that Support One Another

This step is pretty self-explanatory, so I’ll keep it short.

As you set your goals, make sure that they support each other. The worst thing you can do is have multiple goals that are all in conflict with one another. Don’t set a goal to get up at 5 a.m. to workout and then also start a side hustle that keeps you up until midnight every night. That’s not going to work out very well over the long term.

Instead, set goals that support each other. If you want to get up early, set a bedtime goal. If you want to read more, set a goal to reduce your TV-watching time. The more goals that you set that support each other, the easier all of the goals will be for you to achieve.


5. Chart and Track Milestones for Larger Goals

In addition to writing your goals down, it’s also a great idea to track your progress. If you followed step two above, you should have broken your larger goals into smaller, more easily attainable goals and ended up with a list of small goals. Now all you have to do is put some deadlines on your goals.

Once you have deadlines, you can start building your daily, weekly, and monthly schedule around your goals. The schedule is the key to crushing your goals. I use goal planners like Michael Hyatt’s Full Focus Planner to help me with this process, but I also use a simple whiteboard in my office too. Elyse also LOVES her Commit 30 Planner which is focused towards setting 30 day goals to meet your bigger goals!

Use whatever works for you, but remember, you need to review your goals every day to achieve the greatest success.


Start Achieving Today!

The best part about goal setting is that you can start these steps any day of the year. You don’t have to wait until January 1st to set a huge, lofty goal. You don’t have to wait until next month or even next Monday. Start now!

You can grab your favorite notebook and start at step one today. If you’re still on the fence about this goal setting stuff, I encourage you to give it a try. What do you have to lose? Better yet, think of where you’ll be one year from now if you start today!



About the Author

Austin Bollinger is the founder of Daily New Years, a personal development blog and podcast dedicated to goal setting, daily improvement, leadership, and mentorship.

Austin started the blog because he sees countless people give up on their goals, dreams, and aspirations every year after they set the bar too high with their Resolutions on New Year’s Eve. A few years ago, Austin was one of those people too, and he found himself giving up on resolutions year after year.

But since then he has adopted a personal mission to help people crush their goals every day, starting today. He believes that every day provides an opportunity to try something new or improve on something you’re already doing. A “New Year, New You” is possible every single day, not just on starting on January 1st.

Connect with Austin at

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