This week, a friend of mine posted a link to a really interesting blog posting on Facebook, regarding New Year’s resolutions.
This really summed up quite a bit of the on-going dilemma of how I (and probably numerous other people) can’t achieve my new years resolutions and how that puts me through a guilt cycle that pains us right up to 11:59pm on December 31st, when I am able finally reset my pain meter to start that cycle all over again for the next year.
Last year was probably the worst of the past few years, as I was probably really half-assed about setting my goals. That really put me in a downward spiral, being hard on myself for not pushing myself harder to not achieve what I wanted.
This is a serious note to myself, but also to others who may think the same as me, we are that hard on ourselves, because we know we can do it. Setting goals and aspirations for ourselves is the first step to greatness, but the steps that follow after that are just as important. For some, this is natural and maybe common sense and a daily routine, but for me and for many other’s out there, it’s a daily struggle to keep ourselves on the track that we want to go in while we are swarmed by the tides of daily routine.
This year, although I haven’t finished setting all of my goals, this is the process I’m following:
- I thought about what I want to do and where I want to be in 5-10 years. Even though you may not have an answer to this, I know that I do not want to stay put for the next year. I am still hungry to learn, and I still have so much to gain from the things I have not yet experienced in life. Everyone is at a different stage in their lives, and if you are not the type of person who is able to quit their jobs today, leave your family, pack up your bags to live as a Tibetan monk, then its probably worth while to sit back and think about what you want.
- I started setting goals for myself that I want to achieve up to the next 0.25-5 years. Not all of our goals should be for the next year. Set short-term wins as well as milestones towards long-term goals to keep yourself motivated. If you aren’t either willing to take action on it immediately, or to plan out the steps you need to achieve your goal, is it really worth setting up as a goal?
- I prioritised my goals. There is no way in the 24 hours and 365 days we have in our life, that we can do everything we want to do. Of all of the daily things that are happening in your life, what are the things that you really want to do? Remember, given that these are personal goals, we are not obliged to do anything. Everything is something we want to do, and not need to do. The more you pile on to do at the same time, the more likely that you set yourself up to procrastinate.
- I scheduled my goals taking into mind that I actually have a life. You probably have work, friends and maybe family that probably take up, more than 1/3 to 1/2 of your 24 hours. On top of this, I also have work dinners or just work, that can get me home anywhere between 11pm to 2 am. We may be able to control these things, but in reality, we can’t get around it, and there’s no need to pressure yourself to accomplish your goals sacrificing other things that are precious to you.
- Prioritize your goals, but more importantly, prioritize the things that are important in your life today and tomorrow. Going along with the previous point, in order to know how to schedule around our lives, we need to prioritize what is important to us, personally, professionally and financially. There are times we need a break, just sit back and relax, and collect our thoughts. Having this buffer gives us time to reflect and room to catch up. Other times, we need to be stringent on money, and be cheap. Whatever the case, we need to know what’s important at that time, and make sure we adjust accordingly.
- New Year’s Resolutions shouldn’t be set just once a year. Like any project, we should set our goals, and set up a way to track our goals, and realign ourselves if we aren’t on track. I’ve used different tools over the years, but this year I really thought about how I can integrate work and my personal life using the cloud again, since I side track for the second half of the year last year on using the cloud. Using Evernote, Nozbe and Google, I’ve started to tie everything together again to remind me of the things I should be thinking about and want to do.
I’ll probably track my progress on my blog this year, let’s see how that goes for 2015. First I’ve got to get everything down.
How do you track your resolutions and goals? How is it working for you and what kind of results have you gotten?Share on Facebook