Goal Setting...Turning “To Do Lists" into Action!
Updated: Jan 5, 2020
Happy December 30th, I’m not waiting until January 1st, 2nd, 6th, or later to start taking back control after the Christmas chaos, I’m starting right now today!
OK, I actually started 2 days ago but it took a bit to gain momentum.
As you’re being bombarded with “New Year New You” propaganda and “Start Fresh in the New Year” ads to get you to join this gym, that class, lose 10 lbs fast, gain muscle, have more energy, earn more money, look and feel better, and on and on and on...It’s hard not to fall into the mindset of ‘I have to make changes, I have to improve myself’ and why not?
There is no reason Why Not, there are just excuses why you don’t and I don’t blame you. I have had excuses and procrastinated myself but it doesn’t have to be ‘the way you are’! Honestly, we all have the ability and capability to change who we currently are, into who we want to be.
So today, instead of in a day or two, let’s look at some really simple and effective ways to get you taking the steps you’ve wanted to take for days, weeks, months or years. Let’s make TODAY the day of your new day, weeks, months and years to come!
Here are a few Goal Setting tips to get you started and remember to be patient with yourself; the most amazing things in this world don’t happen overnight. Not to mention that fabulous brain of yours has a lot of networking that needs to be rewired in order to create new paths to success, and that’s a tricky process but a VERY DOABLE one I promise!! You can see my post on Brain Power for more on this.
1. Write Down 1-3 Goals you want to achieve and make them BIG, BOLD and BRAVE (better to shoot for the moon and land on a star right!)
2. Now, write down the WHY!
- This is the key part, knowing why you really want to achieve the goal will help you ensure you reach it.
By attaching emotion to your goal, you will be able to recall a deep seated reason why you want to accomplish it in the first place. Emotional connections drive us, so get feeling your goals!
Example: If you want to lose weight start by writing down at least 5 reasons why, in order of priority:
1) Reduce cardiovascular disease risk
2) Keep up with kids
3) Run a 5km with friends
4) Wear that dress you never thought you could
5) Rekindle things with a spouse
6) Have the energy to start another goal...etc etc
3. Have a Clear End Point
- Don’t just say you want to lose weight, earn more money, or travel more. Be specific, write down 5 clear ways/how’s in which you think you can reach this goal.
Example: I want to lose 20 lbs vs I want to lose weight
- The How’s: Week 1 - Walk 30 min M-F, Week 2 - Walk 60 min M-F, Week 3 - Jog 15 min of those 60 M-F, Increase water intake, Limit eating out to 1x weekly by packing lunches and snacks...etc etc.
The above example could lead to a combination of reducing the weight, improving cardiovascular health, getting closer to the 5km run goal, and because you are feeling amazing after the exercise, your relationships are improving all around you.
4. Get Really Specific - Set dates for yourself!
- Whatever your goals are, write them down, define your Whys, write down your How’s and set your Timelines be it: 20 lbs in 3 months - 3 trips in 1 year - Earning 5000k in 6 months
Example: 3 trips in 1 year
- Where do you want to go first? Why? How will you start to make this goal happen?
- Write down 5 ways you can start to achieve your travel goal...If it’s savings you need then set an amount and find ways to start saving each week to get you to your monthly goal.
- Maybe you save 10-15 dollars/euros a day by making your own coffee & lunches instead of takeaways.
- Maybe you get a part time job walking a neighbor’s dog, or ask the boss for a side project that pays as bonus.
- Maybe you have a hidden talent you advertise on Fiverr or Facebook that earns you some weekly cash flow...Whatever your How’s are, start using them.
Give yourself daily, weekly, and monthly targets but keep them clear and concise so you are more likely to achieve them.
5. Write your next day goals down nightly!
- Yes that’s right, every night write down 5-6 things you want to accomplish the next day in order to achieve the first of your goals. Put them in order of priority, this will be up to yourself but try to keep in mind to start with the basics first, walk before you run as such.
- If it’s weight loss/gain maybe your first step goals are to: Start walking - Ditch fizzy drinks - Increase your veggies - Drink at least 4 pints of water a day...etc etc.
- If it’s earning money maybe your first step goals are to: Assess your particular skills - Talk to your boss about a raise - Start on the books, movies, games, or business plans - Advertise your specific skill on social media...etc etc.
- If it’s traveling maybe your first step goals are to: Define costs of the trip - Know what you need to save - Look at ways to start saving - Research traveling on a budget - Learning local hacks for getting the most out of your destination...etc etc.
Remember do not move on to goal 2 until you’ve completed goal 1 and rewrite your list nightly to adjust the priorities if needed. Completing your first goal before moving onto the second goal will help you ensure success, since despite our best efforts we are not really meant to multitask as much as we now do.
6. Repeat, repeat, repeat...Yep it’s that simple, repetition is key to success no matter what form it takes.
Just to make sure we are all on the same page, as everyone interprets things differently, that’s what makes us awesome in our own ways!
There are no definitive ways to set goals, there are only guidelines, and you can use these guidelines to find what works best for you
Using Weight Gain/Loss Goal...since most have set this goal during their lives.
1. Write down your goals: I want to lose/gain weight - Run a 5 km - Get healthier.
2. Write down you Why’s for wanting to achieve these goals: Reduce cardiovascular disease risk - Keep up with kids - Run a 5km with friends - Wear that dress you never thought you could - Rekindle things with a spouse
3. Write down the end goal and get clear about start achieving it: I want to lose 20 lbs in 3 months SO I will add 30 min of exercise to my day and increase this weekly - I will join a Running Club - I will reduce saturated fats and meat consumption in my diet - I will increase my water intake - I will eat at least 5 servings of vegetables daily.
4. Write down your dates or time lines: Be specific with dates now for the targets in #3.
Example: Week 1 30 minutes of walking - Week 2 add 15 min of jogging - Week 3 join Running Club OR Week 1 increase water by 1 pint daily - Week 2 increase by 2 pints daily
-The same can apply to adding veggies or reducing saturated fats. Give yourself daily and weekly time lines to achieve the bigger monthly goal.
5. Write your 6 daily goals down every night: I will walk 30 min - I will buy produce for the week - I will research running clubs near me - I will plan my meals in advance - I will ask a friend to join me on walks for motivation - I will drink 1 additional pint of water today.
6. Repeat, Repeat, Repeat!
Be proud of whatever you accomplished each day.
Now go set some goals and Enjoy doing it :)