I have a secret to share with you. I LOVE to set goals. There is nothing I love more than a brand new tablet of paper and my favorite pen. It inspires me to dream and plan. And with a new year just around the corner I am even more excited to get busy creating a life I love.
Sometimes coming up with a list of goals is the easy part.
It’s the follow-through that can be a bit tricky.
Simple goal setting is a technique I came up with after I found myself year after year, setting this huge and unrealistic list of goals and only achieving a fraction of them.
I know, goal setting is nothing new. Just about every person young and old makes a list of New Year resolutions. And, I am sad to say, just about every person by February 1st completely forgets those goals and is back into their old patterns of living life.
Sadly, I used to be one of those people.
I would write up an insurmountable list of things I wanted to change only to forget all about it a few months or even a few weeks later. The motivation of a fresh start was gone and I was back to the same old person, same messy home, same average life.
What was missing was a plan. One that would help me to narrow down my goals into a specific list. A list that gave value to each goal so I could go in and highlight my most important ones. Once I had that, all I needed was a formula for creating a roadmap that would help me focus and complete each one of my goals.
One by one.
In the last few years, I have been able to not only achieve most of my goals but to remain focused on them every single month of the year.
That is the key after all.
Make goals, keep them in focus, and take steps every single month to achieve them.
Okay, it might sound easy enough, but how do we actually do it? How do we ensure that the goals we make in January are accomplished (or at the very least…remembered) by the end of the year?
It’s simple, you need a goal-setting system.
A simple way to make your goals easy to accomplish each and every single time. I call this system SCORE goal setting and it is your super simple system for not only setting your goals but also for achieving them.
What does SCORE mean?
Set a plan
Let’s break it down.
Ninja tip: Before you begin, print out your free Goal Setting Worksheets so you can easily follow along. By the end of this post, you will have a list of goals all designed and laid out to help you achieve your true self.
Goal Setting Worksheet
Step #1 Set a plan
Start by closing your eyes and imagining your dream life.
The sky is the limit here so don’t hold back.
What does your home look like? Your job? Your finances? Your physical self?
Get a good picture of every detail.
Once you have it, I want you to actually walk through your day. From morning to evening take a peek at the life and person you dream of being.
Are you happy? Are you fulfilled? Is this truly where you want to be?
Sometimes the life we dream of is not all it’s cracked up to be. By actually walking through our day in our mind, we can get a taste of what we want our lives to be so we can then adjust our goals accordingly. As we see areas where we need and want to improve make a note on a piece of paper.
Keep doing this exercise until you actually have your fulfilled life in mind.
Do not skip this step no matter how silly you think it is. Without seeing the end result you can never expect to stick with the steps you need to take to make a change.
By visualizing each area of your life and listing key aspects to focus on, you will see the exact areas that you need to work on. But remember to not overdo it. Try to keep goals to 3-5 for each area with only 1 or maybe 2 of those being very large goals.
Here’s an example to help.
- Remove the clutter in our kitchen
- Organize my closet
- Clean out the pantry and fridge so we stop throwing out food.
- Set up a debt repayment plan for the year
- Create a budget we can stick to
- Go on a date with hubby once a week
- Spend time with the kids
- Call my parents every Sunday
- Get rid of the junk food
- Drink more water
- Begin walking each week
- Create a schedule that is not overwhelming
- Get to work 10 minutes early each day to plan
I know it’s hard when you are dreaming of your perfect home and life but if you don’t keep things into perspective you will have a list of unrealistic goals. The key is to have attainable goals that you can build on as time goes by.
Start small and break it all down into steps.
Step #2 Create easy to accomplish steps
Now that you have your dream life in your sites, let’s break things down into doable steps.
With every goal, you will have mini-goals that you will need to aim for first. Let’s say you visualized yourself healthy and thinner than you are now. Sure we can say your goal is to lose weight and stop right there.
Easier said than done, right?
Without a mapped out plan of what you need to do in order to get you to your ideal weight, you will likely only make it a short while.
You need a road map, specific steps that will get you from where you are now to where you truly want to be.
As with any large goal if you are not specific the odds of you actually losing the pounds are slim to none. If, however, you break that one big goal down into small doable steps you will have a much better chance of actually accomplishing what you set out to do. Lose weight.
So instead of this:
We will write this:
Goal – To attain a healthy and happy weight specifically for me.
- Eat 5 servings of veggies and fruits each day
- Drink 8 glasses of water a day
- Exercise 3-5 times a week
- No eating after 6 pm
- Cut out all refined sugar and processed foods
As you can see, when you list that one large goal out into small mini goals, things become real and a bit easier to see. You are now turning a large dream into something you can actually visualize happening.
Now your vague weight loss goal is now a healthy living game plan that you can easily implement every day.
Psst! Did you grab your Goal Setting Worksheet PDF yet? Because all the sheets you need to do this is all there and you can get yours for FREE!
Step #3 Organize your steps into habits
Another way to ensure you are actually staying focused on your goals is to schedule each list out.
It’s no secret that it takes 21 days to create a habit. So, if you choose just 1 item from each goal list to focus on every week, by the end of a quarter you will have a solid foundation of habits all aimed at achieving your main goal.
Pretty cool, right?
So, how do we do this?
By breaking things down even further. (Remember..steps. Lots of steps!) The bigger the goal, the more you will want to break it down.
So, back to our weight loss example.
- Start each morning out with an 8 oz glass of water.
- Do a morning stretch and meditation.
- Eat a salad before each evening meal.
- Only snack on fresh unprocessed foods.
- Incorporate fish into 2 meals each week.
- Use the stairs whenever possible.
- End each day with stretches and reflection.
By breaking this big goal down into easy to focus on changes and then working on each – one at a time, you will begin to see minor adjustments in your daily life that will all work together to get you closer to your end goal of losing weight.
A mouthful? Yes.
Life-changing? You better believe it!
Step #4 Revisit Your Goals Every Month
This is the game-changer right here friends.
By getting those goals out to read over the first day of every single month you will keep that image of your true self at the forefront of your mind.
By always being focused on your main goal you will take your resolution success just one step further.
Okay, let’s really make this work for us!
Right now take a minute to make a recurring appointment on your phone for the first of every single month.
When that reminder comes up you will take just a few minutes, 30 should be about perfect, to look over your list.
Pull out your original goal sheet and read over what you wrote in January. Now is your time to make any adjustments you feel are needed. Add or subtract any goals and go over your other lists to make sure everything is on track.
Tweak your habits and adjust your steps to better reflect where you are in your life. As we change our goals need to change too.
If your goal in January was to lose a specific amount of weight but now it’s September and your goal has adjusted to getting physically healthy, then your habits will naturally change as well.
Rather than just focusing on a diet you are focusing on your entire lifestyle and that will, in turn, completely adjust your habits for this one goal.
By revisiting your list each and every month you will see where your goals have changed so you can then adjust your habits making your rate for success even greater.
Step #5 Excel and Succeed
Now that you have a map using your goal setting worksheet pdf and the steps that you need to achieve every one of your annual goals, there is no reason for you NOT to succeed!
As you see the changes you hoped for back in January begin to take shape and as the life you longed for comes into focus, you will only want to achieve more.
Success naturally creates motivation, but please be careful here. Don’t begin to add so many goals that your original focus becomes clouded.
Keep your eye on the ball and make adjustments where they make sense rather than overwhelming. Small steps equal big wins, so keep it simple and easy to succeed.
To ensure you do not overdo, quarterly goal revisits is another way to keep our focus in check.
Each new quarter you will want to revisit your Dream Life Worksheet just to make sure you are still on the right path. Just like you did in January, close your eyes and visualize your dream life. If you still see the same goals as you did back in January, then you are on track and right where you need to be.
If you see minor changes, take the time now to make adjustments to your Habits Sheet.
If you see major changes, you will want to ask yourself why. The answer to this question will determine whether or not you are on track or if you need a mid-year restart.
By doing this quarterly check you will stop any roadblocks before they show up making your chance for success even greater.
Let’s face it, we all want to be better. That is a part of human nature. Instead of making goals that are forgotten a few months into the year, let’s instead create a game plan for a life and home you have always dreamed of. Then let’s take that one step further and make those dreams a reality for you and your family.