Use Rhythm to Commit to New Habits in the New Year

By Jessica Wishart

dateSun, Jan 12, 2014 @ 12:00 PM

This time of year, we are all inundated with New Year’s resolution talk - people are committing to everything from losing weight and exercising more, spending more time with family or finally writing that novel.  Usually, we start out strong for a few weeks and then our attempts at self-improvement peter out until we’re back to our old ways in a few short weeks or months.  This year, you can use these Rhythm principles to accomplish both your personal and professional goals:  

-     Less is more.  When you are thinking about personal goals, use the same rule of thumb weRhythm Systems blog - Champagne Glasses use for quarterly priorities in Rhythm - absolutely no more than 3-5.  This focus will increase the likelihood that you’ll succeed.

-     Be as clear and specific about your goal as possible.  Set a due date for yourself and come up with Red-Yellow-Green success criteria for your personal goals, too.  This is the best way to get from an abstract goal like “exercise more” to a concrete goal that you are more likely to accomplish, such as “go to the gym 3 times per week.”  Take it a step further, and plan which three days you’re doing to exercise and write it in your calendar or set a reminder on your phone.

-     Enlist accountability partners and report your progress to them weekly.  You can even go as far as creating a dashboard for your personal goals just as you do for quarterly priorities in Rhythm.  Having to publicly update the status each week will increase the likelihood that you will succeed with your personal goals, too.  Nobody likes to be red on personal goals, either!

-     Break your goal down into smaller milestones and set due dates for those, too.  Let’s say this is the year you’re going to run a marathon.  Maybe you want to start with a 10k in May, then a half marathon in August, etc.  Planning for and achieving these smaller goals to get to the bigger one will increase your commitment, build your confidence and ultimately make it easier for you to succeed.  

If you are a Rhythm software user, you can put your personal goals in Rhythm and mark them as private priorities.  You can use the same weekly habit of updating status on business goals to update the status of your personal goals for the year as well.  

Good luck, and Happy New Year!


Learn to build focus, alignment and accountability; read Execute Without Drama by Patrick Thean


Jessica Wishart


Photo Credit: iStock by Getty Images