How to be Proactive with Goals

Each year I make a list of things I want to accomplish during the year. I have found that making that list, even if I don’t check off every item helps me to be more productive. I find I am more successful in accomplishing at least one large goal. Sometimes just the act of writing it down once helps me to work on that goal without thinking about it.  

I make my goal list in categories, usually work, personal and health. Even if I simply have a habit I would like to change I put something in each category. I choose one thing to get started with at the beginning of the year. Sometimes it’s a little thing; sometimes it’s something that I need to work on all year. I check in on my list at least once a month. I keep track of my progress on the things I am working on, with notes under each goal. For instance, my big goal is to give less fucks. Today I looked at my list and wrote, going well- reading The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck. When I feel like I have made enough progress to add something else, I look at my list and pick the next thing.

Sometimes having a visual representation of your goals, and sometimes a reward helps. If you have a goal of losing a large amount of weight, put a chart on the wall or use an app you regularly look at to track the weight one pound or five pounds at a time. If you have a piece of clothing you want to be able to wear, keep it in your closet and either hold it up to you or try it on to help track your progress. I like having an inspiration board on Pinterest for more challenging, long-term goals. That way when I am feeling challenged I have inspiration I have already collected. Here is one about stressing less from a few years ago. When it comes to rewards find something that is not destructive that will motivate you. I like to give myself extra reading time or a new book.

Having a goal buddy is a great way to stay on track and motivated. Even if your buddy has goals that are completely different than your own, it helps to know that someone out there is cheering for you (I’m talking to you Sarah). Telling someone else your goals, is even better than just writing it down. I feel more motivated, especially to do the harder tasks, when someone else has my list and I have to check in with them about what I’ve done.

Some goals come with a certain amount of unhelpful emotion. Emotions are important and helpful for the most part. Then there are times when we let the emotion and fear get in the way of accomplishment. If you have a goal like this, take some time to journal about it. Figure out what emotion is standing in your way. Most often for me it is fear, sometimes more specifically fear of success. Then think about why it’s standing in your way. Finally, let that emotion go. Don’t let it stand in your way.

Lastly, don’t beat yourself up over goals. My goals are important to me, and I don’t want to be sidetracked. But life happens and sometimes those things that are so important get shoved to the side. That’s ok. Give yourself some time and grace, then try again.

What are your favorite tricks to help you make progress on your goals? Let me know in the comments! 

Be sure to check out my guest blog on Creative Souls Tribe Nashville about celebrating success now.