A lot of us set New Year’s resolutions at the start of the year, but how many of us are still keeping to them by June? Setting mid-year goals is a brilliant way to reevaluate and reset your aims, setting you up for the rest of the year still to come. 

Checking in with your goals around the middle of the year can help you take note of what you still want to accomplish. Maybe the challenges you set up for yourself in January aren’t relevant to your life anymore or maybe new priorities have come up since then - after all, quite a lot has changed in the last six months! 

Read on to find out how to set effective mid-year goals, whatever your personality type.

1.     Review your goals so far

If you set goals at the start of the year, it’s a good idea to check in with those goals first before you start creating new ones. Even if you didn’t, looking back over the year is a great way to assess what you have achieved so far and what you still want to accomplish going forward.

Some Myers and Briggs personality types, including INFPs and INTPs, find it hard to recognize their successes because they have a tendency to judge themselves by impossibly high standards. Others, like ISTPs and ESFPs, race from one project to the next without stopping to think about what they’ve experienced so far and where they want to go next. This exercise is really important for checking in with yourself and taking stock of your life, and it’s something that every personality type can benefit from.

Try jotting down a list of your successes so far. If your immediate thought is ‘I haven’t achieved anything this year,’ I challenge you to look again! It could be something as simple as making it to work on time every day or doing an activity that’s outside your comfort zone. No matter how small or ordinary your achievements may seem, they still matter!

All these micro-achievements are setting you on the path to achieving bigger things further down the line. Now ask yourself, what would I still like to achieve this year?

2.     Be as specific as possible

When you’re planning your goals, it’s a good idea to be specific. The more specific you can be, the more likely you are to stick to your goals and achieve success! 

If your initial aims are a bit vague, you need to work on narrowing down your goals and honing in on what exactly you want to achieve. If your goal is to get fitter, think about what getting fitter looks like. Maybe you want to be able to run 5K in 20 minutes? Or do 100 pushups without stopping? It doesn’t matter what your goals are (remember, no one else has to know about them!), the most important thing is that they give you a concrete target to work towards.

It’s also a good idea to choose goals that you can judge independently. Don’t rely on other people to tell you if you’ve achieved your goals. This is especially important for personality types like ESFJs and ESFPs who tend to judge themselves by other people’s opinions. Try to choose objective targets that you can measure independently, without outside input, to get the most benefits.

3.     Look at the big picture and the small details

Next up, you need to make a plan for how you will achieve your goals. So far we’ve just been focusing on the big picture, but in order to be successful in your aims, you need to look at the details too - ENFPs, ENFJs and ENTPs, this is aimed at you!

Think about the who, what and where of your mid-year goals. If you have a plan to do more date nights with your partner, you need to factor in: what day you plan to go and how often, your budget for your dates and how you’ll pay for them, how you’ll find a sitter and when you need to contact that person, what chores you have to get done before you go out, and all the other parts of everyday life that stop you from doing date nights right now!

If you want to achieve your mid-year goals by the end of the year, you need to work on the logistics, no matter how finicky they are! This is one of the aspects of goal setting that a lot of personality types struggle with. If you’re finding it hard, remind yourself that it’s worth spending the time planning them now, so you can reap the rewards in the future.

4.     Set concrete deadlines

Another key issue that stops people from achieving their goals, New Year’s resolutions or otherwise, is lack of a clear deadline. Most resolutions start with ‘This year I will…’ but they don’t factor in any kind of time scale.

I know my ENTJ side is coming out now but seriously people, set deadlines! 

The beauty of deadlines is that you have a concrete date to work towards so you can manage your time much more effectively. The end of the year is not a deadline. Do you mean December 31st? Or January 1st? Generally, I’d say around the end of the year is a bad time as the holidays tend to knock even the best intentioned goal-setter off course!

Instead, try to pick a milestone date that you can work towards. This is great for personality types who lack long-term focus. For example, if your goal is to reduce your 5k time, you could work towards the date of a 5k race in your area. If you want to do 30 date nights with your partner, maybe you could use your anniversary as the deadline. If you’re looking to hit a particular target at work, why not set your deadline for the week before your end of year review?

Deadlines help planning and planning helps you stick to your mid-year goals! 

5.     Check that your goals are attainable

To make sure you’ll actually stick to your goals, you need to be realistic. Once you've decided on your aims, worked out the logistics and chosen an end date, it’s a good idea to go back and review everything. Check that your goals are actually attainable in the time frame you have set and that you have the resources you need to achieve your goals. 

Some personality types, like INFJs and ISFJs, can find themselves overwhelmed from taking on too many new projects so that they’re left with a mountain of tasks to complete and no time to do it. If that’s you, it’s especially important that you don’t skip this step! If necessary, you could reserve some of your non-urgent goals for later in the year or even carry them through to next year.

Even the best mid-year goals will fail if the task you set for yourself is just too ambitious. If you want to become an astronaut, you absolutely can do it but it won’t happen overnight. First you’ll need to get a degree in a relevant subject so start working on that. If your goals are not attainable in a year, go back and adjust them. Focus on manageable goals that you can reach and keep on setting them until you get to the ultimate goal.

Commit to your goals! 

Once you’ve followed all these steps, the only thing you need to do is commit. You’ve made the plan, now go out and do it!

Elizabeth Harris
Elizabeth is a freelance writer and ghostwriter. She’s an anthropologist at heart and loves using social theory to get deeper into the topics she writes about. Born in the UK, Elizabeth has lived in Copenhagen, Frankfurt and Dubai before moving most recently to Budapest, Hungary. She’s an ENTJ with ENFJ leanings. Find out more about her work at bethharris.com