Today, we’re talking about one of my favorite topics, How to Set and Achieve Goals in Any Season!
I’m almost embarrassed to admit, I never really took goals seriously until 2014. That was the first year I set a goal, intention or resolution and stuck with it for 365 days.
I’ve never really had a problem with goal setting though. You know what always been my problem?
In the past, I’ve tried lots of different strategies to help me stay on track. I’m talking everything from New Year’s resolutions to books to webinars to special calendars and journals.
Apparently, I’m not alone either. According to Forbes, only 8% of people that set New Year’s resolutions actually accomplish them.
Over time, I realized it was the process of taking the time to become crystal clear on what I wanted, utilizing a set of daily habits that helped set me up for success and finding someone or something that would help keep me motivated when times got tough.
Believe me if I can do it, I know you can too!
Here’s a look at the tips and tricks that have taught me how to set and achieve goals in any season….
Define Your Goal in Clear and Specific Terms
Say your goal is “I want to be healthy.” That’s a HUGE goal and there are so many ways you could look at what seems like such a simple objective.
For example, in what area of your life do you want to be healthy exactly?
- Eating habits?
- Cholesterol numbers?
- Your relationships?
- Exercise routine?
- Your negative self-talk?
There’s a reason why having the goal, “I want to be healthy,” is overwhelming from the beginning. The goal is just too broad.
In order to set and achieve goals in any season, you have to be clear with your intention and specific in your focus.
Saying, “I will plan, make and eat 2 healthy meals and 2 healthy snacks per day,” or “I will hike a new trail every Thursday morning at 9 am” or “I will choose water before coffee each morning,” creates a situation in which you can be successful because it’s totally doable.
Make a Realistic Plan of Action
If you’re a DIYer or enjoy all things home décor, you likely have home goals you want to work on. I can totally relate this this one because I have them too!
One year, one of my goals was to paint every room in the house, including all the trim and the closets.
In January, it seemed like such an easy goal. It felt like I had plenty of time. But then life got busy, as it always does, and the amount of time I had to devote to painting this island cottage started to quickly dwindle.
Before long, I found myself completely frustrated the house was still painted in Cashmere instead of Bistro White.
I could have saved myself a lot of time and frustration had I stopped to look at my calendar. Even in January it was filled with workdays that lasted from 530 am – 7 pm nearly every day and 3 out of 4 weekends filled with travel plans.
The goal to paint all the rooms in the house in a year was not a bad one, it was just not a realistic one for that specific time in our life.
As you’re working to set and achieve goals in any season, really stop to think about what is realistic. You probably have more options at your disposal than you realize.
- Is this goal a top priority right now?
- Can I hire someone to do this task?
- Do I have friends or family members that can help?
- Can I still achieve what I want but at a slower more reasonable pace?
- What am I willing to say “No” during the week and on the weekends to make this goal a reality?
- How can I break this goal up into more manageable chunks?
Give Yourself a Visible Timeline
Some of the most amazing people I know work well under pressure. I do not. I stink at multi-tasking.
Stink. At. It.
You know what I seem to be amazing at though? Procrastinating.
That’s right, delayed decision-making I excel at. I can talk myself into anything and out of everything.
Over the years, what has helped us to set and achieve goals in any season the most is to create a visible timeline in our calendars, planners or through design boards.
Giving yourself a timeline allows you to be flexible within the set of boundaries you’ve already created.
For example, if you want to develop better eating habits, you need to make space in your week to research, prep and create healthy menus. If you want to paint your house, you need to take time to research paint colors, possible contractors and your budget.
Set a non-negotiable date with yourself each week so you can review everything that’s coming up.
These actions might all seem like small steps. Don’t let their small size fool you though! They’re small steps leading to big progress while you work to set and achieve your goals.
Find an Accountability Partner
This is one can be scary, but you need to do it. You need to find someone that is loving enough to call you out when you’re floundering but respects you enough to be your biggest cheerleader.
It doesn’t matter if your accountability partner sends you an encouraging text that reads, “You can eat healthy today. I believe in you” or a phone call asking how you’re doing with your house painting project.
Tell them specifically what your goals are and work together to create a plan that will help keep you on track consistently.
I truly believe having an accountability partner fosters positive changes for the long haul.
Celebrate Your Progress
Celebrating the progress you make each day/week/month is really important because our lives are going to be busy and stressful and hectic and at times frustrating too.
Celebrating your progress, no matter how big or small is going to be the motivation you need to keep at it when you feel like stressing eating brownie batter or giving up on your dreams all together.
There’s nothing like the satisfaction that comes from celebrating smallest victories.
Be it eating celery instead of chips, dragging yourself out of bed at 5 am to exercise when you feel all warm and snuggly, passing on a new outfit in order to reach your financial goals or giving up a weekend out so you can commit to painting your bedroom.
Keep in mind, setting and achieving goals in any season are accomplished one step at a time, one decision at a time and through a successful chain of solid positive habits.
Every day you work toward reaching those goals you will make progress. And while progress is not always perfect, it is always worth the extra effort, so keep going.
Your goals and dreams have value because you have value!
Let me know what I can do to help encourage you on your goal setting and achieving journey.
A Few Other Posts on How to Set and Achieve Goals in Any Season You Might Enjoy:
- 17 Simple Ways to Ease into the New Year
- Word of the Year
- 6 Strategies for Reaching Your Goals (January Goals Video)
- 7 Things to Prioritize Before School Starts