Day 3 What’s the Difference Between Goals and Resolutions

For this Goals and Resolutions Challenge, our focus will be on making improvements to your life, which includes a lot of dedication and work. The motivation to do the work lies within your goals and resolutions. Let’s look further into those two terms: goals and resolutions. People use them interchangeably but they are not the same. I explain below:


A goal is your target. It is the desired outcome that you want to attain. Goals have a definite and precise endpoint. Meaning you will know exactly when you reach your goal. You put a timeframe on it. There are short-term goals and long-term goals. Also, goals can fall into different categories in your life. For example, you can set a career, relationship or personal goals.


The term resolutions can be used in several ways. For what we will be tackling in this 30-day challenge, we'll be looking at personal resolutions that have to do with the course you want to take in your life. A resolution is a promise to yourself, and it's something that is more open-ended than a specific goal. Making a resolution usually entails altering some aspect of your life, such as eating better, focusing on loved ones more or managing your finances.

How they're related

These two terms go together. That's why they're often referenced together. Your resolutions are made up of goals. The resolution is the overall theme or the direction you want to take with your life. The goals are the action steps to take you to that place. If you want to lose weight or eat healthier, (absolutely the most common New Year's Resolution) you need to set goals on how you will accomplish this.

Without goals, resolutions often go unmet. How many resolutions have you made and fell flat a month later? That’s natural because of the way we go after the resolution. We focus on what's immediately in front of us. We are on pure adrenaline and excitement for this resolution. But those feelings fade. Setting goals and checking in with them on a regular basis will keep your mind on the resolution making it more likely to become a reality. 

Basically, a resolution is something you will be constantly working toward, while a goal is specific and fixed. Resolutions are made up of goals. They are relevant and intertwined. We'll be focusing on both as we proceed along our challenge. 

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