It’s the first of the month, and it’s got me thinking about goals.
Over the past few weeks, in addition to working with you guys, writing the blog, writing the thesis to my PhD, creating new content for the podcast and taking care of the family, I have been thinking about goals.
It made me think about how swamped we get just living and that we are often too busy to make sure we are achieving our own goals or doing things on ‘purpose.’
Girls, I know you’ve got aspirations!!
Therefore, this blog will be all about goal setting and helping you achieve your goals.
To get the most out of this post, I’m going to need active participation. I recommend you have a goal in your mind that you could use as an example as you read through the steps. It doesn’t have to be anything extraordinary. Just think of something that you’d like to achieve.
So let’s walk through the steps of goal setting :
1. What’s your objective?
Before you start, think about what you’re trying to achieve. For example, is it a promotion at work or to run 5k in 30 minutes.
Be clear on your goals by :
- Choosing something you want to achieve ( it has to be personal to you, not what someone else wants for you)
- Selecting a goal, you believe it’s worth your time and effort
If your goal doesn’t fulfil the above criteria, think of something more worthy of your time and effort. Remember, the goal has to be important to YOU.
2. Ensure your goal is SMART.
When setting goals, you need to be specific; you’re likely to fall off track if you don’t know precisely what you want.
You also need to Measure your progress towards the goal; for example, you can measure running 5k ( you know if you’re running 3k, you haven’t reached your 5k yet). You’ll see when you’ve met your target because you can measure the distance of 5k.
Make sure your goal is Attainable. For example, you may set unachievable goals such as becoming a manager at work in 3 weeks when you are in an entry-level position. A more achievable goal would be becoming a manager in 12-18 months (depending on the industry).
They also need to be Realistic; I am not saying you can’t dream big but, it’s a good idea to start smaller and then set a more significant goal next time.
For example, say you don’t have a background in computer science, but you have heard that if you have an MSc, the pay is good. Therefore, you decide that you now want to complete an MSc in Computer science in 2 years. This goal isn’t realistic, you don’t have the basic knowledge in this area, and you can’t get on the postgraduate course because you haven’t completed the undergraduate course. A more realistic goal would be to complete an access course in one year, then move on to the undergraduate course. Once that’s finished, you can apply for the MSc course ( which you can then complete in 2 years).
Your goals also need to be Timebound. Give your goal a realistic end date. Whether it’s saving £100,000,000 for retirement or switching jobs, make sure you have an appropriate end date. Setting a time limit will ‘hold your feet to the fire’ and help to keep you motivated and n track.
3. Write them down
To cement your goals in your mind and make them more tangible, you need to write them down.
Once your goals are in writing, they are out of your mind and into the world. You can now carry them with you, which will remind you to stay on track and work on your goals daily.
4. What’s your plan?
You’ve set your goals, you’ve written them down, and now you need to create a plan.
Think about the steps you need to reach your goal. If it’s to lose 30lb then, how do you plan to do it? Will you count calories? Will you join a weight loss group?
Be specific with your plan and make sure it works for you and your lifestyle.
Get creative and have fun. Creating a plan helps to cement the goal in your mind further.
5. Give them a timeline
When do you want to achieve the goal?
I like to start from the deadline and work backwards. First, I break the goal into smaller, manageable steps. Then I set dates and work towards them. This sense of urgency motivates me to stay on schedule and achieve my goals.
Say you want to get a BSc in finance, and you want to start in January 2022. You’ve just set your deadline of January 2022. Now you can plot the rest of your timeline. What do you need to do next to achieve your goal? I’d research finance degree courses that have January start dates. From there, I would look at the course application deadlines and add that to my timeline. After that, I would add other deadlines, like applying for five courses by a specific date or when I would like to end researching suitable courses.
You’ve got your plan and plotted the time; now, you need to take the first step. Each step you take brings you a bit closer to your goal. You’ll be levelling up until you achieve your goal.
7. Check in on your progress
To achieve your goals, it’s a good idea to check in on your goals to keep yourself motivated. Schedule a time once a week to check in with yourself and see how you are doing. I always keep some time on a Sunday to look at my previous week and upcoming week to make sure I am on track. I look at my finances, food shop, and other goals that I want to achieve.
I use this time to see how well I am doing and whether I need to evaluate or renegotiate my steps, timeline or goals.
What goals do you have?
Have you ever thought about creating a timeline to ensure you meet your goals?
Is there anything standing in your way?
If so, how can you remove this obstacle?
Did you know we offer 1-2-1 coaching at the Independent Mum’s handbook?
Here’s a link to our coaching page https://independentmumshandbook.co.uk/life-management-coaching/.
Feel free to book yourself in for a call, and we discuss how we can help you balance your responsibilities and reach your goals.
As ever, if you have something to share, leave a comment below.