A little bit over a week into the New Year and I have lost my flow. I started this year with a bang, I had all my goals mapped out and broken down into weekly tasks. Yet this week I feel like I have fallen completely apart. I have lost all of my flow. All my motivation has disappeared. Now don’t get me wrong, I still want to achieve my goals, I still believe they are the right goals for me this year yet I don’t seem to be able to focus my time and energies on completing them. So I figure it is worth taking a few moments to re-discover why my goals matter to me and how to stay on track this year.
My goals are important to me because they will help me to move forward in all areas of my life. They are not exactly massive goals I have three financial goals that are completely achievable, I have a goal to read at least 12 books this year – which is only one a month, not too hard, and I have a writing goal, this is the goal I feel most at war with. I want to write an article every week for my blog, I also want to write at least one e-book that I can release later this year. The blog posts are not exactly that daunting; as long as God keeps giving me the inspiration for the articles then I shouldn’t have any shortage of posts! The e-book on the other hand is a more daunting project, committing to writing about forty-thousand words on the one topic, which is scary enough without thinking about all the editing that needs to be done.
FOCUS. Focus is one of the most important aspects of staying the course with your goals. You have to focus on both the goal itself and the why for the goal. If you can’t articulate a ‘why’ for the goal then you need to re-assess the goal and its importance. I know the ‘why’ for my goals. I know why I want to write my blog and my e-books, it is to combine my vision of seeing people reach their full potential and become happy in the process along with my desire to be always learning.
PLANNING. I think this quote by Benjamin Franklin sums it up perfectly, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!” This is so true, when we don’t take the time to plan ahead and actually write our plans down, we push them to the side, and they don’t seem to take as high a priority as they should. I know myself I struggle to put value into my goals when there are so many other good and worthy things clawing at my attention. It can be hard to put time aside for your goals especially if they are only in the early stages and therefore they don’t have a big presence in your live, whether that be a financial return or some other type of return.
MILESTONES. Setting milestones is very important. You need to be able to track your goals and your progress. It is all well and good to set a goal like mine to write a forty-thousand word e-book in twelve months, but if I don’t break it down into weekly and monthly milestones it will always seem like a daunting endeavour. However committing to writing about 800 words a week and a little over 3400 a month, will get me to my end goal of 40,000 words in 12 months and seems much more manageable.
HABITS. Our habits are wheat we fall back on. When we set good habits they become second nature and continue to push us towards our goals, when our habits are not so good they can become roadblocks for reaching our goals.
PROGRESS. Big goals can often seem never ending. This is why it is super important to track your progress on your goals. I like to use an excel spreadsheet to keep record of my goals. I have a daily word tracker to track how much I write each day that will add up over the month so I can see how close I come to the goal amount each month.
SUPPORT. We all need someone to cheer us on. We need a support network that are there to encourage us to keep going when we feel like stopping or feel that we are never going to see the end of our goals. I have a great support person who I can rely on to helpfully push me in the right direction. She always knows the right thing to say to make me keep working.
Hopefully this will encourage you to keep going with your goals this year and every year.