wikiHow to Achieve Your Goals for the New School Year

Every person wants to achieve the goals set at the beginning of a new school year. Yet, as time progresses it can be all too easy to fall back into bad or slack habits, such as procrastination, cramming and poor researching, sending the original goals to achieve, well, right out the window.

However, how would you do if you know which steps to take to achieve success in your school career? Amazingly, because planning your goals and dedicating yourself to achieving them will bring about results that you truly want.


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    Choose specific, realistic goals or even one single but very important goal. When it comes to choosing your goal, ensure that it states precisely what it is that you want to achieve. Don't generalize.The exactitude of your goal involves both what you want to achieve and identifies the effort that you will put in to achieve it. Simply setting a goal without acknowledging the effort required won't be successful, whereas understanding what needs to be done to get to your goal will be.
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    Write down your goal. Having a hard copy of your goal makes it real. Once it becomes a physical entity and not just a thought going through your head, it has form, substance and reality for you. Ways to express your goal might be:
    • Write it in a journal that you'll be keeping all year ahead.
    • Write it on a poster and stick it above the desk that you look at each day. Every time you remind yourself of your goal, you're training your brain to accept the effort needed to make the goal happen.
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    Research the topic. The best approach when setting up a goal is to research the topic in which it is in so that you can understand better how to achieve it through the tools, information and resources available to you.
    • Ask questions when researching your topic.
    • Try various methods out. One may not work while another may be just right for you. Be aware of the way in which you learn best and focus on that; some people learn best through writing, some through listening and reading, some through talking it through. Until you have realized which way works for you, you might not realize that the method used within your school makes your learning harder for you. Once you do realize, you can work around any school driven study methods that aren't perfect for you and institute those that are much better.
    • Know and understand the information. This may take drawing up mind maps, drawing visual diagrams, chopping the information down into smaller parts, talking to people related to your goal and so forth. Seek to discover which methods enable you to best digest the information you receive.
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    Break your goal down. By chopping your goal up into manageable chunks, it allows you to mentally tick your way through the goal until the end of year. This method makes it being easier to handle and therefore you're far less likely to give up or dodge your goal by taking shortcuts or refusing to do anything. As well, it is simply more practical to break down a goal into achievable parts. All you got to do is think what you need to do to achieve it, and make it a step by step process, with reward goalposts along the way.
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    Put a brake on distractions. There are many distractions in life, including technology and romance. It is easier to be sidetracked by things that don't allow the time for achieving school goals and it is important to acknowledge these possibilities and to plan to deal with them consciously.
    • Set small periods of time each week for TV and internet use that isn't for research purposes. Don't allow these times to bleed into study time or to replace it. Choose to do quality fun things instead of just any old thing when you do use technology for entertainment.
    • If you're dating, keep it short and sweet. Although it's nice to be around your sweetheart, there is a long way ahead of both of you and where your relationship goes is far less certain than where your goals ought to be taking you. Give priority to your goals as well as your studies too,equally and enjoy dating on weekends now and then.
    • Emails, phone calls, IM, texting, etc., are all potential sources of distraction. Keep them to a minimum and answer them during set times or after the studies have been completed.
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    Make it happen. Don't think to yourself that over time you will manage to do it. Thinking is a useful start but thinking doesn't do the grunt work and thinking certainly won't move mountains. Go out every morning knowing what you need to do and then do it!
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    Make sure that you make the most of the opportunities you get every school day.
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    Think positive. If you're not in the right state of mind you won't be able to succeed because you won't believe that you can do it. Negative thought patterns that repeatedly tell you can't do something are unhelpful and they're roadblocks. Stop telling yourself you can't and start telling yourself that you can and speak about what you are doing rather than hoping you can do something. Always think to yourself that you're capable, even if you have a stumble along the way. Remember that everyone makes mistakes but it isn't the mistake making that trips us; it's how we respond to it that matters. If you get up again and learn from it, determined to forge on, then the mistake turns into a lesson in itself and not a barrier.
    • Stay motivated. Tell yourself positive things such as 'Anything is possible' and 'The sky is the limit.' And write these affirmations down, or just have the goal down with all the benefits in which will come out of it. Make it so that you will want to go out and do it.
    • Whenever you're not sure, ask yourself 'What results have to be achieved to make a difference?' These are results in the wider context of the person you want to be and where you want to see yourself in the future. Focusing on the future self can be a helpful way to nudge the present self into more focused action.
    • Every night, identify the most important challenge you will have the following day and make it your first priority to deal with when you arrive at school and you're fresh and relaxed.
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    Reward yourself along the way. All study and no reward can break your spirit. Occasionally, when you've achieved certain "milestones" in your goal plan, take a break and reward yourself. See a favorite movie, visit a friend who lives across town, go to the ice cream parlor with your friends or buy yourself a new something.


  • Get plenty of energy enhancing sleep. Sleep is often neglected with a heavy timetable of school, sports, study, activities and even part-time jobs. Yet sleep is the cornerstone of being able to cope and is something you must ensure is regular and of the adequate length every night. You will notice a major difference to your positive energy levels if you let your sleep patterns improve.
  • Don't give up.
  • If family members sabotage your study time, be creative in finding ways to work around it and create study time. Getting up early in the morning before anyone else is up can sometimes be more effective than staying up late, you're fresh and ready for exams or classes first thing in the day with the information clear in your mind.
  • Look at the reasons you have for your goal instead of just pursuing it because other people want you to. It works best when you know what you want and your reasons for doing it are your own.
  • If you need motivation, shoot high. You can get to a high goal with a lot of small successes and sub-goals, one young woman got a full ride scholarship to a state university by keeping her grade point average high enough and was able to choose her major instead of having to take what her family wanted her to.
  • As part of achieving your goals, always focus on trying to learn what your strengths are. You'll need to know these when you start making career choices and the earlier you learn to tap into them, the more focused your career and lifestyle choices will be later. Equally, learn your weaknesses and how to manage or work around them. They won't go away but you can learn to either improve on them or find methods that let you bypass them.
  • If you have an IEP [Individual Education Program], read through it and use things that it says you need, such as extra time,to your advantage.
  • If you don't have the money to purchase rewards for yourself, find ways to reward yourself that don't take buying anything. That can include setting aside a favorite game or activity only for when you earn it by achieving sub-goals, blogging your success at sub goals online at a free blogging site or forum, writing it on a special record sheet that you can take out to see all of your achievements in writing. Think of your goals as cumulative.

Things You'll Need

  • Journal
  • Sticky notes
  • Markers
  • White Board

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