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  • Writer's pictureThe Redeye

5 Steps to Plan and Reach Your Goals

Here you are. Halfway through the year and that New Year’s Resolution may now be just a hazy memory. Something about saving money…being more mindful…eating healthier…

You’re not alone. According to research, less than 10% of people actually follow through on their New Year’s Resolutions. At the beginning of the year there is a lot of buzz around change and goal-setting, but then life gets in the way and you abandon your efforts. The good news is, it’s not too late to get back on track. In fact, there is something you can do right now that can significantly increase your chances of reaching your goal.

Did you know that you are 42% more likely to achieve your goal simply by writing it down? There is also evidence to support that consciously infusing character strengths into the process will further boost your chances for success. After you take the VIA Survey and discover your rank order listing of strengths sign in to your account and get your personalized VIA Me and VIA Pro Report package to learn more about how your strengths benefit you. Then, using your Reports as informational guides take out a pen and paper and use the steps below to create an actionable plan to start making progress on your “Mid Year” Resolution.


  1. Write a goal that you would like to attain. Use your hope strength to envision something that links with your interests and values (referred to as self-concordant goal).

  2. Make the goal SMART. Using this acronym, check to frame your goal to be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. Use your prudence strength to plan it out thoroughly across these five elements.

  3. Weave in your character strengths seamlessly. How can your signature strengths serve as a means to help you reach your goal? Might other character strengths support you as pathways to your goal as well?

  4. Begin to take action toward your goal. How will your perseverance strength support you in overcoming obstacles and staying focused on your goal ahead?

  5. Enlist support. Might you include the help of family and friends to maintain your goal progress? This could involve deploying your strengths of teamworkcuriosity, and love.

Studies show that signature strengths use is connected with well-being and one of the explanations for this is that signature strengths help you make progress on personally relevant goals. Additionally, some character strengths are inherently linked with goal-setting, especially hope, prudence and perseverance. As outlined above, hope helps you envision the goal, prudence helps you plan the goal and perseverance helps you carry out the goal.

Now is the perfect time to breathe life back into some of your goals and it starts with this simple exercise. Good luck!

Explore more on character strengths and goal-setting here.

Exercise taken from Dr. Ryan Niemiec’s groundbreaking field guide for practitioners, Character Strengths Interventions. Get your copy here.

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