It is so hard to believe that we have said our goodbyes to our summer days and here we are in September, already! Are you wondering where on earth did the year go already? What happened to those goals and plans (and maybe even new year’s resolutions) that we were so motivated to achieve at the beginning of the year? In a few short weeks, we will start to feel the grip of the far, but not so far away, holiday season upon us. End of year. New Year. Yikes!
Setting goals and actualizing them is no easy task and a task that doesn’t need to be seen as a fruitless exercise, either. Often, we set goals with great intentions and then get completely bogged down and distracted with our day-to-day to do lists. Of course, there are those “whack-a-moles” that pop up that we didn’t even know we would need to deal with on top of what we already planned to do.
So, how do you control the chaos? How do you control your time? How do you achieve the goals you want to achieve in your personal and professional life and still have balance? Planning with intention is the key and it isn’t difficult. In fact, I’ve been teaching others how to do this for almost 20 years, and it is so simple if you are willing to create a few small new habits.
- Identify what you wish to achieve by this time, next year. Yes, look ahead. Start with the end in mind.
- Decide why each goal is important for you to achieve. There’s no point in creating a goal without really understanding why it is so meaningful for you to get it done.
- Carve each goal into smaller slices of the larger pie. For example, if I want to lose 15 pounds over a 12-month period, then I might look at dividing that 15 pounds by 12 months to get a monthly goal. If my goal is to bring in 4 new clients for the upcoming year, then I would look at bringing in one new client a quarter. The key here is to take the end results and break it up into smaller pieces over the course of a year so that they are no longer overwhelming to think about getting done with everything else you have to do.
- Plan each week of the year with intention. What on earth does that mean? You decide before a new week begins, what you are going to do with your time each day. This is the clincher. For example, when I plan each week ahead, I fill in my meetings, deliverables, and to-do lists. Then I look at my larger goals and decide what is the one thing that I am going to do this week toward that larger goal.
Before you know it, by this time next year you will be looking back and smiling at how you were able to chip away all year long at those big goals and managed to stay on top of your day-to-day. You did them both simultaneously. You identified what you wanted to achieve, you decided why those goals were important to you, you carved smaller bite-sized pieces of each goal into mini-goals over the course of the year and then before each new week began you planned with intention one action that you were going to take toward your larger goals. Totally doable, attainable, and incredibly satisfying!
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