This time of year everyone is talking about goals and new years resolutions. As someone who thrives from making set plans, checklists and spreadsheets it’s not surprising I set new goals for myself every year. Every year my goals look a little different and how I set them changes but that’s to make them better year to year.
Here is how I set and accomplish my goals:
- Outline specific goals. I don’t just say I want to be healthier, I say I am going to eat 5 fruits and vegetables every single day. This makes my goal measurable. This allows me to say yes I completed that or no I did not. I try and choose 5-10 specific goals in different areas of my life like health, relationships, work etc.
- Write my goals down. Yes, it is true if you write down your goals you can reference them and stick to them! I wrote mine in my journal that I use every day. This is a daily reminder to stick to what I want to achieve because it’s easy to fail. Life happens. You have good intentions but work is busy, kids have other schedules, you get sick, whatever happens is going to throw you off. What is important is being able to refer back to your goals and get back on track!
- Make a plan to execute my goals. Now I figure what I need to do to accomplish my goals. For example, if I want to eat 5 fruits and vegetables every day and eat three meals a day then I need to eat a minimum of 1 serving per meal plus an extra or a snack between meals. Making a plan to actually execute my goals takes them from wants to actual goals!
- Schedule my week. Once I decide what I need to do to accomplish my goals then I schedule into my week. What foods do I need to buy to make sure I can eat 5 servings of fruits and vegetables every day. I don’t accommodate for every minute of every day of the week, but I do look to see what I have going on and then schedule what I want to accomplish each day. This makes a long to-do and goal list manageable.
- Make a WHAT IF plan. My schedule fluctuates so much throughout the week. I always have good intentions to stick to the schedule I started with but something is bound to change so I make a WHAT IF plan. What if I plan to eat lunch at home but get asked to lunch? How can I still choose foods that are working towards my goal to eat 5 fruits and vegetables everyday instead of against it? Maybe I order a side salad instead of fries with my burger or I choose a wrap rather than a meat and cheese sandwich. Small changes lead to big achievements!
- Reflect on my week. Before I begin my next week I review the previous week. What went well? What can I do to improve? I don’t beat myself up if I miss a day but I do reflect on what happened and how I can be more successful next time. This helps me be a little better every week and eventually I can achieve my goal!
This is MY way of setting goals. Everyone is different and you have to find what works for you. I hope this inspires you to set goals for the new year AND stick to them. No one is going to make your goals happen except you!