At the end of December, Greg and I sat down to create our goals for 2019 and something totally weird happened. We had a really hard time setting personal goals for the year. This is what the conversation looked like:
Me: So what are our goals for 2019?
Greg: Ummmmm…… (crickets)…
It was so hard for us to set one single goal for 2019 and I think it was because we weren’t looking at our overall vision first.
I walk people through this in my goal planner but I thought maybe it would be helpful if I did it here too.
If you are struggling to set goals, do this first.
9 Absolutely Necessary Tips on How to Set Personal Goals
What is Your Overall Life Vision
In 5-10 years, who do you want to be? What do you want to accomplish? What impact are you making? Where are you working? What are your hobbies? What are you eating? What are you wearing? What car do you drive? Did you start the business you wanted to start? Where are you living? Who do you hang out with? What do you do for exercise?
Greg and I answered these same questions together and as a couple it was fun to hear the other persons answers. Some of ours were the same and some were very different but the cool thing was when we took a step back and looked at our future it was so much easier to create goals for the next year.
If you feel stuck on how to create your personal goals, take a step back and look at the big picture vision. This will help you start writing out your goals like a crazy person. Your little hand won’t even be able to keep up with how fast you want to write!
Everything flowed when we took a look at our big vision because we have a definite idea of where we want to be in 5-10 years. We know what kind of money we want to make. We know that we will be working for ourselves by that point. We know where we want to vacation and what impact we want to make on our local community.
If you have trouble setting goals to begin with, you can print out the questions I have from my planner (totally free- just click the image below) and write them down on the paper or simpler grab a notebook and answer the questions from above. Either way is totally fine, but trust me answering the questions will totally help.
Create Smaller Goals from that Vision
So then what?
When you set the vision of what you want for your life, you list them out and then attack one thing at a time. In the planner, I have people write out their overall Best Life Vision and then I have them list their Dreams. I feel like listing them out helps you identify exactly what you will need to do to attack that list.
If you have a vision for your life that includes a cleaner home, list it as a Dream and make that a 90 day goal and write out room by room what you need to do to get your house organized and then go to that list every single day and attack that baby. Schedule time throughout the week to get your organizing done.
I time block on a white board so I make sure to have time for my biggest goals. You can do that too or write them down where you will look at them each day.
If you want to weigh less, write down your ideal weight and then make a 90 day goal to hit your first target. I use 90 days because it has worked for us and kept us motivated because each day counts. I have everything written down and I have rewards when I achieve the goals.
Identify Possible Obstacles When Setting Personal Goals
What do you think will stop you from achieving your goals? Time? Lack of belief that you can actually accomplish the goal? Fear that you will fail? People? What do you think will ultimately get in the way of you achieving your biggest goals?
You know something will come up right? You know as soon as you go to pay off debt, your water heater will break. You know that as soon as you set a goal to lose weight, someone will bring in donuts at work. You know that as soon as you set the goal to organize your house, your kids will bring home an avalanche of paperwork from school that they just HAVE to keep.
Expect that there will be things that derail your progress.
I’m going to give you an example of something that has held us back….
We bought 3 houses last summer with the thought to flip all 3 and we wanted to get our first house done and try to flip it before the end of 2018….
The dang house is still on the market….
Is it frustrating? You bet it is….
Did I expect that? Nope. I actually thought it would sell pretty quickly
Am I upset about it? A little, but life goes on and we have alternative plans if it doesn’t sell by the end of February.
If it doesn’t sell, we can rent it. We have had a few people inquire about potentially renting it (that is such a blessing), but our end goal for that house has always been to sell it. So we will wait it out and see what happens at the end of February. If it doesn’t sell, we move on to the other possibilities which would be rent it or do a rent to own option.
The point I want to make with this is…. if something doesn’t go the way you thought, think about other possible solutions. There are probably plenty others to choose from so don’t ever feel like you are boxed in. Maybe you aren’t losing weight as fast as you thought you would, what can you do differently to help speed up the process? Exercise more? Try a different diet/lifestyle plan? There are so many books out there to choose from. I am actually reading a healthy lifestyle book now because I am having trouble losing a few pounds. If all goes well, I will post about the book soon.
I think our natural reaction is always to get frustrated and quit when we encounter an obstacle and I don’t want you to do that. I want to help you develop problem solving skills so you never feel frustrated. Instead, I want you to feel empowered because you know if you come across some struggle, you just gotta pivot and find that next thing that will help you get to where you want.
If It Doesn’t Scare You, It’s Not Big Enough
It’s about to get real…..
Did you know it is ok to set big goals? Like enormous goals…
Set goals that when you think of them, your palms start to sweat and your saliva dries up. You feel like you could pee your pants at any second when you think about them because they are so crazy big. That is a good life goal my friends.
Fear is something that often holds us back when we set our goals, but in my opinion (and from my experience) it can also be a good thing because it helps you develop tough skin. It is sooooo good to set these crazy and maybe unrealistic goals because you will experience personal growth like a mother when you go after these audacious goals….. and personal growth is what you want. When you look back on 2019, I want you to be like “yeah…. I went after 2019 and man was it a good year!” instead of “I watched this series on Netflix followed by this series and then this one.”
Life is made to live, not just watch Netflix.
Focus on ONE THING at a Time
I love to create a big vision because it helps me to know where I am going. If I know where I am going, I can then create smaller, more manageable goals from that and start working towards them. I mentioned above that I really like to set 90 day goals because it is immediate action that I take towards one of my bigger vision goals. Also, it helps me focus on one thing at a time.
I write something very specific as my 90 day goals. Sometimes they are habits I have been working on that I want to take to the next level. Sometimes they are business goals and financial goals that we want to meet with a very specific number.
Here is an example of my 90 day goals for the first quarter of 2019:
- Eat 4 fruits/veggies daily and exercise 30 minutes 4 days per week
- Go to Toastmasters meetings 2 times per month and do introductory speech
- Sell or rent 23 street
- Finish one other flip property
- Read 2 personal development books
- Be consistent with one post per week on blog
These are a few of my goals for the first quarter of 2019 and honestly, I have read 2 personal development books already (actually I have read about 6 books this year which is crazy…).
Having them written down helps you focus. Let me explain something too. I have already established exercise and eating habits that work for me. Since they are a habit, I can do these on autopilot. I don’t question when I will work out or what I will eat because I have a foundation set for these things in my life. If you aren’t there yet, focus on what is the most important to you and make that a habit first. Set the foundation for what makes sense in your life and attack the one thing. The goals I have are reminders that I need to focus on these things to accomplish them in the first 90 days. What does that look like to you? Maybe you have 1-3 things listed and that’s it. That is totally reasonable and actually it is more likely that you will get it done if that’s the case so just because I list my goals doesn’t mean they have to be the same for you….k?
If you have struggled to achieve a goal or you are struggling with finding time to achieve a goal, think about the ONE THING that would make you the happiest if you achieved it and go after that goal first. Make it a priority. Put it on your schedule.
If you are thinking, Beck, I would love to achieve a personal goal, but girl my life is a mess… I am totally unorganized, I have so much to do and I don’t even know where to start…. I get it, I’ve been there and I want you to start here with your weekly schedule and then come back to this post.
Take one step at a time, but please take the first step….K?
Take Immense Action
Do you know what the opposite of overwhelm is? Action
We run into this from time to time. We feel super overwhelmed and frustrated and we start fighting with each other and life is terrible and then we hit our breaking point. We hit a peak of frustration and overwhelm and then it hits us….. we aren’t doing anything about our frustration.
It is a simple word, but sometimes we are so confused or overwhelmed to even know what to do, right?
Here is my philosophy. Take one step today, then one tomorrow and keep going. What can you do today that will get you closer towards your goals? Eat one healthy meal? Get up and exercise for 15 minutes? Don’t buy a coffee and use that money to pay off debt? Call the counselor and schedule a marriage counseling session. Set up a budget. Get rid of the junk food in your house. Call a trainer and schedule your first session. Declutter a room in your house or even declutter a drawer in your kitchen.
Even smaller yet…. go over your last 30 days of spending and write it down. Get up and take a walk for 10 minutes. Start looking up and printing out healthy meals on Pinterest. Research books about health and weight loss and order one to follow. Start researching how to start your business. Make a date with a potential mentor. Go to a Weight Watchers meeting. Organize a closet. Get rid of clothes you aren’t wearing.
Action does not have to be monumental to be significant.
This is so real my friend so if you feel overwhelmed right now, take some kind of action towards the thing that is overwhelming you.
Reward Yourself When You Achieve Your Goal
This is so fun. When you achieve your goal…. celebrate. Tell everyone on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, the cashier at the grocery store, your boss, the person you don’t even like and then tell their aunt.
It is a BIG DEAL.
What are you going to do to celebrate when you achieve your goal? Don’t miss out on the celebration because you down play your goal. If you lose the first 20 pounds, celebrate with a new pair of shoes. Try on those shoes when you set your goal and then take a picture of your feet with those shoes on and hang it somewhere on your wall or fridge. It sets the tone of what you will reward yourself with once you achieve your awesome goal.
If you have a vision board, you can put it up on the vision board as something you will go after. This is so fun and don’t miss this step. You absolutely need to reward yourself because you are working hard friend! Right now, write down what your reward will be once you achieve your goal.
I hope you feel empowered by these tips because goal setting is so fun and it is all about growth. You will experience growth as a person when you set any type of goal and you make the effort to go after it.
What are your goals? What do you want out of your life?