Once upon a time, I made New Year’s resolutions. They were usually something like: lose weigh, declutter, or reorganize. Vague and without specific actions or deadlines attached, they were mostly unsuccessful. Don’t get me wrong, they worked… for a week or two.
Goals are similar but different. A 2021 article in Forbes magazine explains that “goals are more specific and action-oriented than resolutions, which makes it easier to create a plan to achieve them.”
Plan to Achieve Your Goals
Suppose one of your goals is to increase your bank balance. How much more money do you need or want? List the ways in which you can reach this goal. Should you look for a new job, work longer hours, or take on a side gig? Maybe you could cancel a few subscriptions, shop in a consignment shop instead of a department store, or clean out a closet and sell some of your unused items. Whatever your goal is, if you can break it down into smaller manageable chunks that are measurable, you are more likely to be successful.
What About My Goals?
My goals for 2023 include continuing my weekly Friday Micro email and publishing a collection of my stories in print or as an e-book. My list of measurable actions would include writing at least one new story every week and organizing my completed stories in a file. There are more steps in my plans and deadlines for completing them.
Make Your Goals Visible
Writing your goals and posting them on a wall with Post-its or on a bulletin board will keep them front and center. Add them to a Vision Board. Read your goals daily.
I type my list of tasks associated with each of my goals and the corresponding personal deadlines. Then I mark the deadlines in my Bullet Journal and will change them as needed throughout the month/year.
Start Whenever You Want
What if you didn’t set your 2023 goals in December or January? Not a problem. Begin in February or March, or July. It doesn’t matter when. What matters is that you set a specific, action-oriented goal with measurable tasks for accomplishing it.
Set a Monthly Goal Instead
If a yearly goal is too overwhelming, break it down. Decide on a specific goal that can be accomplished within a shorter period of time. That could be quarterly, monthly, or weekly. Plan the tasks and then complete them, one at a time.
Achieving a goal might be rewarding enough for you, but I am motivated by other, more materialistic rewards: chocolate, wine, or something on my “wish list”. Use whatever appeals to you. You deserve it!