At the start of a new year many couples have great hopes and dreams for things they want to accomplish. Frequently they set goals and make resolutions that simply do not materialize. Here are three essential steps to get you on track as a couple in the New Year.

Create Attainable Goals

Setting goals and making plans are important steps towards accomplishing your hopes and dreams. Too often couples set such lofty goals that before long they lose momentum and interest and their intentions and efforts quickly fade away.

Set small goals and take small steps as you work to accomplish your dreams. Instead of saying, “We are going to pay off all our credit cards”, it may be better to start small. Instead you may be more effective if you promise yourself, “Every pay period we are going to pay down on each card until they are all eventually paid off”. Also it would be helpful to make the decision to curb spending so that new debt does not accumulate.

Teamwork Makes The Dream Work

Afteryou and your partner have established your goals, you will need to work together as teammates to accomplish them. It’s a good idea to periodically discuss how well you are progressing towards your goals. This gives you an opportunity to determine what is working well and what you may need to change.

As you work towards your goals, you and your partner will likely have moments of disagreement. Bear in mind, your team is stronger when you make an effort to hear and respect each other’s perspective. A healthy dose of patience and consideration is important. You will also need to effectively manage your emotions during moments of frustration.

Protect Your Goals from Dream Stealers

In order to stay on track towards your dreams and your goals, you will need to avoid falling into the rut of past disappointments. Every couple experiences failures and struggles at some point in the relationship. If you’re not careful those failures will impede your progress towards your goals if you allow them to.

As you reflect on past failures, you may begin to doubt that you can attain your present goals. This concern is understandable. Accept it for what it is, your mind trying to protect you from future disappointment. However keep striving anyway. You are much more likely to arrive at your goal if you just keep moving, even if progress is slower than you want it to be.

Stoke the fire of motivation by keeping your focus on what you are trying to accomplish. Encourage each other and celebrate the accomplishments that you have made so far. Don’t allow any missteps to bog you down, instead view them as an opportunity to adjust what you are doing and keep moving forwards.