Setting Healthy Mental Health Goals for the New Year

The new year is coming up and for many people that means setting new year’s resolutions. If you’re on a journey for better mental well-being, some of your resolutions may involve progressing on your mental healing journey in the year 2024. While it’s good to set mental health goals, it can be helpful to set healthy and realistic goals that will upkeep your momentum for healing. Some tips for setting some realistic and meaningful mental health goals for the new year include:

Set Goals That Are in Your Reach

When we set goals that are too far-fetched, it can make us feel defeated before we even begin to work toward them. It’s best to set mental health goals that are actually achievable. For example, it’s not a good idea to set a goal like “I’m not going to experience a depressive episode this year” as this is something that you may not be able to control due to life circumstances. Rather, set goals that are realistic and attainable – things that you can control in your life and are reasonable expectations for you to achieve.

Create a Plan of Attack

It can be helpful to know what steps to take in order to meet your goal. You don’t achieve lifelong goals overnight, and there are always processes to take. So, when you set a goal, make sure to go over the steps and plan these out one by one. For example, if your goal is to get a better job because your workplace is negatively affecting your mental health, set up the steps it would take to achieve this goal first. For example, writing a resume, developing a cover letter, getting new clothes for an interview, preparing for an interview, etc. When we have the resources (like the steps) we need to meet our goals, we are more likely to achieve them!

Create Specific Goals

Giving yourself a general goal that’s ambiguous may be harder to achieve because you won’t be able to set up the steps necessary to meet this goal. For example, if you set a goal to “be a better person”, what does this entail? Rather, setting goals should be more specific. So, if your idea is to be a better person, figure out what it means to you to be a better version of yourself. If this means being kinder to others, you can set a specific goal like “give someone a compliment every day this week”. Being specific with your goals will give you a better idea of how to achieve your goal and stay on track.

Establish a Time Frame to Meet Your Goal

One way to stay motivated about meeting and achieving goals is to establish a time frame. In many cases, New Year’s resolutions are established for the year. But, mental health goals don’t have to be accomplished in a year. Rather, they can be more timely than that. Remember, you can even set a mental health goal to reach every day! Having more short-term goals means being able to achieve more on your journey to mental healing and well-being.