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Top 10 tips on Making a New Start

At our blog co-production meeting this week, our blog group share their top tips on how to make a new start or change through goal setting. You don’t need to wait until New Year to make a change, just follow our top 10 tips. 

1          Concentrate on one goal so that you don’t overwhelm yourself

By focusing on one goal at a time, you will avoid lack of focus and confusion. You will also be able to concentrate and commit to that goal 100%, instead of trying to achieve lots of goals at once.

2          Set SMART goals (Specific; Measurable; Achievable; Relevant; Time-limited)

SMART goals provide focus, and give you a clear end game. They should be challenging, but be something you can achieve. Did you know our course Achieving Goals & Motivation covers SMART goals in more depth? Find out more here.

3          Begin with small incremental steps which are achievable

Break a large goal down into a number of smaller goals. This will enable you to effectively measure your progress, and provide a route map to achieving the end goal.

4          Set goals you want to achieve yourself – don’t compare with others

There is a temptation to let others set your goals for you, but be firm. Make sure the goal you set is one that will help you improve your wellbeing.

5          Involve/enlist your support network

Let those close to you know your goal. They will hopefully encourage you to achieve your goal and help where they can. For example, if the goal is to lose weight, they might participate in exercising with you or cook a healthy meal.

6          Make time to achieve your goal

Set aside “me-time” to focus on achieving your goal. If you are too busy with the rest of your life, then it is very easy to put off doing activities that will help you achieve your goal.

7          Focus on priority goals

Be careful to not be distracted by things which are subsidiary to the main goal.

8        Don’t be put off by disappointment but learn the lessons

If you fail to achieve something, do not give up. Review what happened and, if possible, identify the reasons why the goal was not achieved. Once you have done this, reassess the goal to see if it’s still something you want to achieve, and if not then reset the goal.

9        Reward yourself when you achieve a goal

Give yourself an incentive to achieve by giving yourself a reward every time you achieve a target. Celebrating your achievements will help you along the way.

10      Monitor and review your progress towards achieving your goal

At every stage give yourself time to assess how far you have come, how easy it’s been to get this far, and what barriers you have overcome. By doing this you’ll hopefully make the achievement of future targets easier.

We are keen to showcase our students’ recovery journeys. If you are a former student of the Nottingham Recovery College and would like to be interviewed for our blog, please get in touch with us either through the College admin team or email

Have you found this blog post helpful? We would love to hear from you on our Facebook page or via our Twitter. Alternatively, please email our blog co-production team on


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