With the calendar pages flipping to a clean, fresh slate of a new year, so comes with it the feelings to purge and simplify, to goal set and plan, and the desire for a clean, fresh slate as you make and reach your goals… I know it’s that way for me! While I’m still processing so much from 2016, including the birth of our fourth and a fun partnership with Folgers that landed me in InStyle, Real Simple, Southern Living and Health magazines, there is just so much more to be grateful for and it’s taking me a few extra days to flip the switch into the new year.
Even so, I’ve been setting some time aside here and there to goal set for this new year, a new season of life for my family and I. I feel like there are always changes and decisions to be made, and when there are goals to measure those against, well, decisions just get a little easier to make as well!
I’m not a huge resolution maker. To me I find that they can have a bit of a negative stigma attached. Many times when setting resolutions, our minds wander to what we want to stop doing, how much we want to lose or what we need help in quitting. A goal however is a whole different ballgame, at least it is for me, mentally. With goals we can more easily look out ahead to the future, to the good. We can set a positive tone as we aspire to something greater. Instead of a resolution to lose weight or stop something, I can set a goal to up my water intake in the morning, add vegetables to dinner and find healthy recipes that my family loves. Usually they will end in a similar result, but I find that a positive goal set is easier (and more fun) to maintain… leading to greater success!!
So while most of this is mentioned in my recent video on YouTube (come subscribe, we’ve got a giveaway!!), I thought I’d write a quick recap here for those of you who may not want the sound turned up at your office desk 😉
Six Tips to Successfully Make + Reach Your Goals
Take the time.
Let’s not flop into our goals haphazardly, let’s take the time to think about where we want to be. An important part in any journey is knowing where you are now as well as where you want to be, so that you can map the route to get there. Can you tell I just came off of a 3000 mile road trip?! Seriously though, hit up a coffee shop, make time in your schedule, go somewhere that inspires you and just take a little time to think about where you want to be, and the journey it will take to get there.
Write it down.
“Write the vision and make it plain upon tables that he may run that reads it.” Habakkuk 2:20
This is a quote that replays in my head any time I’m thinking about goal setting. Get. It. Down. Write it out, on paper, on a document, in your phone… somewhere that you can see it and read it easily. First, you need to make it important enough that you’ll write it out. You’ll want it written in plain sight so that you can be reminded of it often and encouraged on your journey. You’ll want to reference it when you have decisions and choices to make so that you can measure those against your goals. So while you’re taking the time to think on where you want to be… write it down too!
Make it mandatory.
This is just a mental exercise really, but make your goals mandatory. They are not an option. What happens when a meeting or a training comes up in life and we don’t really want to go? What’s our question? “Is it mandatory?” Why is that? Because if it’s something that we don’t feel like doing in the moment, something that feels like more effort that we want to exhaust at the time, we will try and find a way around it or a good excuse to get out of it. Don’t let your own self sidestep your dreams and goals. Don’t let procrastination or laziness hijack your plans. Make your goals mandatory.
Give it a deadline.
I am the queen of procrastination. I think it’s just inherent in our nature. If it doesn’t have to be done right now, then there is just about always going to be something more entertaining to do instead. When I have a deadline from a client, I make it happen. So why is it that I’ve had some of the same “to-do” items that get carried over from month to month? I didn’t give those items a deadline and procrastination or the desire for something else took over. To keep your goals in the mandatory, must-be-reached column, give them a deadline.
When the going get’s a little tough the best thing you can do is visualize where you want to be! Give yourself a mental picture of the other side of the problem, let yourself see you coming out of it, reaching your goals, at your destination. The path getting there can become more clear when we take time to look up from the day to day, mundane, required steps for getting there and look ahead.
Like so many things in life, we can easily forget to be grateful for where we’re at. While goal setting is important, we don’t want to be SO goal and list focused that we forget that life is still happening in the here and now. Let’s celebrate the small wins, the daily victories. Let’s remember where we were before and how far we’ve come. Let’s remember to be grateful for each step of the way, because without them, we wouldn’t be going anywhere.
I have to say, I’m EXCITED for 2017 and what the year ahead brings with it. I’m excited for the fresh start and though I haven’t cleared away the Christmas decorations or reorganized anything yet, it will happen and that always invigorates me to reach new goals and new heights! What do you do to set yourself up to successfully make and reach your goals?