Science Says You’re More Likely to Pursue Your Goals When They’re Set on these Days

Monday is the best day of the week to set your goals, suggests new research.

A recent paper published in Psychological Science says that the date a goal is set can affect the likelihood of its actual pursuit by the goal-setter.

Dates perceived as meaningful can serve as “temporal landmarks” that help people separate their old selves, and all of its baggage and failures, from current, improved selves, the researchers write. Goals set on temporal landmarks are more likely to be acted upon because people are more likely to feel empowered when they feel that their failures are behind them and their success is ahead of them.

In one of the paper’s five studies, the team of researchers found that participants who had March 20 described as the first day of spring, a temporal landmark, were 3.5 times as likely as those participants who had March 20 described as an ordinary day to choose the date from a range of dates for a customized email to be sent reminding them of their goal and how to reach it.

The study suggests that personal and professional goals are more likely to be accomplished when they are placed on dates that can stand out as fresh starts.

“The abundance of fresh start opportunities throughout the year offers repeated chances for people to attempt positive self-change, so even if they initially fail, they may subsequently succeed,” the authors write.

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