As the New Year approaches and you start to think about your New Year’s resolutions, I want to challenge you to think a bit differently. In this post, you will find 10 questions to ask yourself before you set your personal goals for 2019.
I love setting goals. Eeeekkkk! I seriously get so excited. In fact, tomorrow morning, I am taking 2 whole hours by myself to go to Panera to think about what I want to accomplish in 2019.
I will actually have time to complete a thought since my kids are still in school before Christmas break. It is seriously the little things that I love….
Anyways, I thought I would write out the 10 questions that I am going to use to guide what I want to accomplish in 2019 that way you can use them as guidelines for your 2019 goals. I don’t set New Year’s resolutions anymore… instead I set personal goals. Resolutions are these fly by night wishy washy things you say to yourself without any real plan to get them done. Personal goals, on the other hand, are specific measures of what you will accomplish because you have a plan on how to make them happen.
10 Inspiring Questions to Ask Yourself When Setting Personal Goals
1. What personal goals do I most want to accomplish this year?
If you could accomplish one thing this year, what would that be? Is that the most important thing for you to accomplish right now? What do you need to do to work towards that goal?
Maybe it isn’t just one thing. Maybe you have 3 medium sized goals that you want to accomplish and that is totally ok. My suggestion would be to not create too many goals and focus on the quality of the personal goals you want to achieve. When you are setting goals, make sure they are realistic for the season of life you are in also.
For example, if you just started a business, you may want to focus on the growth of the business in the first quarter and then focus on your goal of losing 20 pounds in the second. If you focus on both, you may struggle to achieve what you want to achieve in both areas and then give up because they both demand too much of your time. It is ok to focus on one at a time and not try to do both. Give yourself permission to focus on one thing.
2. When I get to December 2019 and I reflect on the year, what will I be most proud that I accomplished?
I love taking the time to reflect because it tells me where I have grown. Growth is a subjective measure of how well you are doing with achieving your goals. Take the time now to figure out in which area you would like to grow so that a year from now, you will look back and say, “Yes, I did exactly what I set out to do.”
For me, at the end of 2017, I created 3 words that I wanted to characterize my 2018 and they were uncomfortable, action and impact. I think that the 3 words fit pretty well for 2018. We grew our real estate biz, added an employee, became realtors, I created my first physical product for my blog, we grew our party rental business, I joined the board of a nonprofit and put myself out there more than I ever have. In my mind, the 3 words I used for 2018 do in fact characterize my year.
So now as I reflect on the year, I can say that I am pretty happy with my personal growth, but there is still more that I want to accomplish.
3. Do these personal goals align with my ultimate life goals?
I would encourage you to write out your dreams somewhere. I have a planner that I will write all of my life dreams in tomorrow, but if you don’t have a planner, you can grab a notebook or whatever and write down your life dreams in that.
Some of my life goals are: I want to travel to Italy someday. I want to own a beach house someday. I want to drive an Infiniti QX80 someday. In order to achieve these big goals, I have to have a plan, right? So obviously I have to think about how I am going to achieve some of these financially.
The Italy goal isn’t going to happen this year and honestly, that one will probably be 5 years or more from now, but it is still a goal of mine. The car on the other hand… I would love to drive my Infiniti in the next 2-3 years. So in order for that to happen, I need to be very methodic on my spending and saving in order for that to be a reality.
4. Do these personal goals get me closer to the person I want to be?
Always think about this question when you are creating your goals. When you write down your best life scenario in your planner, think about every aspect of you being the best you can be and then work backwards to get there.
For me, I want to get better at speaking in public so I asked Greg to join Toastmasters in 2019. It is something I have wanted to do for years and this year I am taking intentional time to improve on my communication. And hopefully not sweat every time I have to speak in front of a crowd.
5. Have I taken the time to write out my long term dreams?
I mentioned this already, but this is key. Write out who you want to be 5-10 years from now and then take the time to list your dreams so you have somewhere to return to when you are creating your goals this year. I set 90 day goals because I feel more pressure to get them done in 90 days and I have been more successful in accomplishing more in 90 day segments than over a year.
6. What business/financial goals do I have in 2019?
This goes along with travel plans, family vacations, starting a new business, growing a current business, etc. What goals do you have that are associated with money.
Maybe you haven’t ever thought about financial goals before. Maybe you want to pay off debt. Maybe you want to
7. Do my personal goals include a way to balance every aspect of my life?
I was listening to a Podcast in the car the other day on Rise – Rachel Hollis’ podcast and she was interviewing Brendon Burchard and they were talking about goal setting.
He mentioned one practice that he uses each Sunday to include a way to balance his life and I loved it. Every Sunday, he takes the time to grade himself on 10 key aspects in his life like family time, marriage, faith, health, personal development, etc. He grades himself on a 1-10 scale each week that way he can improve the areas that are a little weaker. I loved that.
So often, I look at the week and I may have done really well in one area, but the other areas are off. If I take intentional time and bring awareness to all areas of my life, I can actively improve on those areas at the same time. Eeekkk. I love it.
8. Are my personal goals realistic for this period of time in my life?
Is the season of life you are in stressful right now? If it is, give yourself permission to make smaller goals. If you are going through illness, make your goal one of taking care of yourself and getting through the day.
If you are struggling in a relationship focus on that before getting to the next goal.
If you are a new mom, focus on creating a routine for you and your family and then move on to the next goal. Goals should not be overwhelming. They should be practical. Look at where you are in your life right now and set your goals accordingly.
9. What may hold me back from achieving my personal goals?
If you can predict where you may struggle, you will win at achieving your goal because you can predict how you will overcome the struggle as well. If you can think about solutions before the obstacle is in your path, it becomes less of an obstacle and you will push right past it.
We often give up because things get hard, but we reduce that likelihood when we start to predict what could happen to derail our progress.
10. How will I overcome obstacles that I may face this year?
So from question #9, write out your obstacles and then write down 3 solutions to these obstacles. This is a very powerful trick so if you get good at this…. ooohhhhweeee, you will do big things friend!