Happy New Year! You probably know that January is the most popular time for people to set goals, or “New Years Resolutions” but did you know that MOST people abandon their Goals or Resolutions before the end of January, when the excitement wears off and the hard work needs to begin. I find this really sad, and what it says to me is that so many people are looking for a “quick fix” and also, that most people understand how to SET a goal, but that that is just the beginning.
I’ve been a bit obsessed with Goal Setting over the last few years, and I always find it interesting, some of my goals I achieve, some I miss the mark (sometimes only just – last time I set out to run 10km in under an hour I did 1:01:51) and some goals I abandon before I really even make any progress. Reflecting back, I think I have figured out that some of my goals are really just wishes or dreams, which is kind of like most people’s New Years Resolutions.
What I’ve learned, is that it takes more than just setting a goal, coming up with the idea. Goal setting is actually a process, and there are several steps to take to ensure that your goals (or dreams or wishes) actually become reality. Here’s my top 5 tips for setting goals, and how to actually go about achieving them.
- WHAT do you want? Get specific, and WRITE IT DOWN. The more specific you can be with your goals, the more chance you have of getting what you REALLY want. This one simple thing can have a HUGE IMPACT. It’s not enough to say “I want to earn more money” or “I want to book more clients”. How MUCH money do you want to earn? By WHEN? Write your goals down, put them on post it notes around your house so that you SEE them and are reminded daily. Some experts suggest that you write them down every day. When you write your goals, make sure you phrase them in the positive, and present tense. (eg. Rather than “I am not eating any junk food” you could say “I am nourishing my body with healthy food”) Remember: where focus goes, energy flows; so focus on the thing that you do want.
- Know your WHY. Having a REASON for achieving your goal will help you stick with it when the going gets tough. If you want to earn $50K in your bridal business so you can quit your boring day job, that is a really good motivator, and will keep you going when you have to deal with the inevitable bridezilla, or being so busy that you are exhausted at the height of wedding season. Think about what it will mean to you when you achieve your goal. Imagine walking into your job and handing in your resignation. Attaching feelings and emotions to the achievement of your goals gives them so much more power. If your goal is to run a marathon, you could focus on the feeling of elation as you cross the finish line.
- Formulate a PLAN. Knowing WHAT you want is one thing; knowing HOW to get there is probably even more important. “A goal without a plan is just a wish”. Get specific with your plan. If you want to earn $50K in your makeup business, what will you need to do to earn that? How many weddings? How many personal clients? How many days of commercial work? Break it down and account for the income. Is this a realistic goal? Do you need to put your prices up? Once you have a clearer idea of where the money will be coming from, you can then formulate a strategic plan to get there. A big part of your plan needs to be determining what you are willing to do, including any sacrifices or struggles. If you want to lose weight, are you willing to sacrifice that chocolate bar you eat every afternoon? Get up an hour earlier to go to the gym? If you want to book more brides are you happy to answer lots of enquiries and deal with the rejection of some brides not booking you? Are you willing to do the work to build your portfolio so you can attract your ideal bride?
- WHO do you need to be? Often we need to grow as a person in order to achieve a goal. This might mean learning a new skill, or developing new habits. This is a crucial part of the process though, so spend some time reflecting on who you need to BE to DO the things you need to do in order to HAVE what you want. I’m hearing a lot lately about this BE, DO, HAVE process.
- Measure your progress. “That which gets measured, gets improved” If weight loss is a goal, you need to weigh yourself regularly. If earning a certain sum of money is your goal, you need to track your income. If you aren’t tracking your progress you won’t know whether your plan is working. Sometimes you will need to tweak the plan. Measure your progress and remember to celebrate your milestones and progress along the way. Remember: “Progress is perfection”.
Bonus: TELL SOMEONE. My mentor says “A goal shared is a goal amplified”, so share your goals with someone close to you, OR, if you feel like it, share them publicly, on your social media, in a Facebook group, or wherever. Declaring your intention publicly sends a message to the universe that you are serious, and also you can rely on others to help keep you accountable. If you’re feeling really brave and committed to your goal, come and share in the discussion on my FACEBOOK PAGE.
Good luck with achieving all your goals in 2019!!