Last week, I talked about how I was ringing in the new year by writing a love letter to myself instead of resolutions. In today’s post, I want to tell you a little more about that process and also share a few tips for setting and achieving goals.
I’ve never been too big on resolutions, but I do like welcoming in the new year by doing something to feel renewed and ready for what’s to come. So when I got the idea to write myself a love letter last year, I jumped on it! And it was such a good experience that I did it again this year. In the most recent letter, I wrote down what I wish for myself in 2018 and the things I give myself permission to do this year. Instead of coming up with a list of what I have to do, I focused on what I’d like to invite in this year and how I’m allowing myself to prepare for that goodness. For me, this process felt so much more liberating than coming up with resolutions. At the same time, it gave me the opportunity to do some visioning for the year ahead and set intentions.
Something else I really like about this letter-writing practice is that my goal-setting doesn’t feel confined to only the beginning of the year. Maybe it’s the rebel in me, but I don’t believe in forcing myself to set resolutions just because it’s that time of year when everyone else is doing it. I set my goals when the inspiration strikes me. And I love having the freedom to start a new project or let go of one whenever I want.
All that being said, I’ve got to admit this IS a great time to come up with resolutions and goals for the year if you’re feeling so inclined. And I’ve got 5 steps to help you do this successfully today or whenever else you’re feeling inspired to do so!
Before we jump in, I want to take a moment to emphasize how important it is to grab a pen and paper (or type it out on a computer) when you’re ready to get started with these steps. This might seem basic, but it’s not. Writing all of this down will make a BIG difference in the ideas you come up with and it’ll give you the opportunity to look back on it later on when you’re in the middle of pursuing the goal.
When it comes to setting and pursuing goals, effective planning is a key factor in whether or not we accomplish them.
Here are my 5 steps for setting AND achieving goals:
- Identify Your Core Values: Our values represent the aspects of life that are most meaningful and important for us. They often serve as the basis for many of the choices we make and actions we take. So knowing what your core values are will help you set goals that are both exciting and purposeful. You can use this values worksheet that I give all my clients to identify your top 5.
- Get Clear on Your Intention: As I’ve said in a previous post, intention is the soul behind the goal. Being really clear about your intention(s) will help you stay focused and motivated. You can refer back to it/them anytime you’re feeling stuck, tired, or need a reminder about why you’re pursuing the goal.
- Aim High but Be Specific: When it comes to actually setting the goal, don’t just reach for the stars. Reach for the exact star you’d like to land on. So once you’ve got a general sense of the big goal you’d like to pursue is, dig a little deeper. How do you want it to look/smell/sound/taste/feel when you’re finished? What details about this particular goal do you need to decide on before you even start working on it?
- Create an Action Plan: Break the big goal down into manageable micro-goals and set deadlines for them. If you’re not sure how to get all the way to the finish line of a major goal yet, focus on coming up with the next 5 actions you need to take. By the time you get those done, you’ll know what the next 5 should be.
- Celebrate: Don’t underestimate the importance of this one. Every step forward is an accomplishment and deserves recognition. Have a micro-celebration for each micro-goal you achieve and deadline you meet. This will keep you excited throughout the process. Then when you accomplish the major goal, it’s time for a major celebration! Own your success!! It’ll make you feel good and be another motivating factor while working on your next big goal.
If you’d like to get even clarity around your goal and create a blueprint for pursuing it, check out my FREE bold leap journaling prompts. This is another great resource that can be combined with the steps above. You can sign up to get the journaling prompts at the bottom of this post!
Before I go, of course, I’d love to hear from YOU!
What are your top 5 values?
Got any resolutions or goals you’re already working on for 2018?
Tell me all about them in an email or a comment below the blog post.
Peace and blessings,
P.S. – Are you feeling stuck, overwhelmed, or uninspired by your life? Is there a challenge you’re facing or goal you’d like to work towards? If you’re ready to take a bold, true leap in your life, I can help you. Click here to schedule a FREE discovery session with me.