by Stephanie Siclari
As the new year begins, it’s time to reflect on the past year. Did you accomplish what you set out to do? What could you have done better? What went well?
When you contemplate 2021, be sure to also plan for 2022.
As ice skaters, we are often so eager to accomplish the next skill, pass the next test, or win that competition. How we get there, of course, requires discipline in our physical training, but it also requires an actionable plan. Setting goals allows us to see the “big picture” of where we want to go and how we plan to get there.
As business strategist, author and philanthropist Tony Robbins says: “Progress equals happiness.” When we see progress, we are bound to feel a sense of satisfaction.
Take yourself to the next level by setting yourself up for success with goal setting — set SMART goals, a strategy outlined by Robbins in “How to Set Smart Goals:” (The SMART acronym, developed by George Doran, Arthur Miller and James Cunningham in 1981, stands for goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely.)
S (Specific): Be specific with what you want to achieve. This step answers the question, “What do I want to accomplish?” For example: “In 2022, I want to land an Axel.”
M (Measurable):This is the step for tracking your progress. How will you plan to achieve your goal? For example: “I will practice Axel prep skills until I am ready to try the jump on the ice. I will work on my off-ice Axel rotations and drills to help enhance my Axel on the ice.” The more specific you can be in how you plan to measure the progress of this goal, the easier it will be for you to see how close you are to reaching it.
A (Achievable): This step means setting an achievable goal in a specified amount of time. An example of a non-achievable goal is: “I want to be Olympic champion in Beijing in 2022, but I am a novice level skater.” This is simply unrealistic; if your goal is landing the Axel and you are already landing single jumps, then landing the Axel is a more realistic goal.
R (Relevant): This goal is aligned with the current skills you are already working on. In our example of landing the Axel, this would be a relevant goal if you are a freestyle skater working on single jumps.
T (Timely): What is the timeframe within which you would like to achieve this goal? Give yourself a reasonable amount of time to accomplish it. For example, if you are just learning the Axel, think of your “Measurable” step — how often will you train? What steps will you take? From there, you can set your timeframe for accomplishing this goal.
This process may seem overwhelming initially, but the first step in achieving your goal(s) is to identify them. Perhaps start with a smaller goal that is easily achievable, because when we accomplish goals, we feel a sense of satisfaction. If we can achieve the smaller goals, putting our focus and energy into them, we can certainly achieve our bigger goals. Celebrate every win, even the small ones!
And don’t forget to write down your goals! In a recent study by the Dominican University in California, “those who wrote down their goals were 42% more likely to achieve them,” according to Robbins.
The number one reason people do not achieve their goals is due to fear! With the right mindset and attitude, discipline and patience, you can achieve your goals!
Now let’s all go out and make 2022 a successful year!
Download my SMART Goal Guide to get your started.
Stephanie Siclari has been providing figure skating and power hockey skating instruction for all ages and levels for 15 years. She has worked with skaters from across the globe, who have competed at national and international competitions as well as the U.S. Figure Skating World Synchronized Skating Championships. She is a former senior ladies competitor and two-time U.S. Synchronized Skating champion and Team USA member (Miami University, Ohio, collegiate and senior teams). She is the creator of SKATERFIT, an off- and on-ice training program designed to help skaters build confidence and physical and mental strength while providing a fun platform to achieve their goals. For more information, please visit coachstephaniesiclari.com. You can also visit her YouTubechannel for additional exercises.