Jan 5, 2022Micro-goals shake up 2022 New Year resolutions

As people move towards small frequent goals throughout the year instead of diving into unrealistic ones, attitudes around New Year’s resolutions are shifting. With micro-goals and small wins keeping people motivated, changing the goal-setting narrative away from a once-a-year custom is key.

Salomé Silva

A survey conducted by Medifast reveals that people are changing the way they approach New Year’s resolutions in 2022, with many choosing to give themselves more achievable bite-sized goals on a regular basis. Indeed, 58% of people in the US plan to incorporate small changes into their daily life throughout the year, and almost half plan to set goals that help build healthy habits, with 42% planning on celebrating small victories as they achieve them. Considering 48% of people lose motivation over the course of a year and 15% set overly ambitious goals, these are some of the main reasons New Year’s resolutions have failed in the past. As a result, many people are learning the 'new year, new me' mantra is not a realistic one to live by.

Psychologists say the tendency to set goals after a break is known as the 'fresh start effect', however, New Year’s resolutions traditionally come with high expectations, added pressure, and a fear of failure – leading some to avoid the custom altogether. But this doesn’t mean self-improvement isn't desirable, it means that people's attitudes towards goal-making are shifting. Indeed, in 2021, 67% of people made multiple, more achievable 'micro-goals', with people planning on average 12 of these. Brands can tap into people who are shifting away from the once-a-year resolution by empowering those who have turned to micro-goal-making, helping them to focus on the short-term and keep up with their targets in more manageable ways. For example, Atkins, a weight-loss brand, has launched a campaign celebrating small health and wellness wins with a five-week, simple-steps plan.

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