Monday, May 20, 2013

5 Things to Do Now to Get Back on the Goal Train

Remember those goals for the year you wrote down back in January when the year was your oyster?  Now that we are almost halfway through 2013, it’s a great time to re-evaluate the goals we set, dust them off if they have fallen to the back of busy schedules, and perhaps re-adjust where necessary.  A high five to all of you who have been actively working on your goals since the beginning of the year.  For those of us who may have let them get away from us, let’s look at 5 ways to get back on the Goal Train.

1.       Review your goals

Read through the goals you wrote down at the beginning of the year.  If you didn’t write them down back then, take some time now and record them.  Put a giant green check mark next to any goals that you have met thus far, along with words of praise for yourself for following through with your game plan.  Come up with some kind of reward for yourself to acknowledge your accomplishments.  If you haven’t met any of your goals yet, don’t let negative energy overtake your thought process.  Be kind to yourself and commit to following through with the following steps.

2.       Re-assess your goals and priorities

For goals that you haven’t met yet, review their order of priority and rewrite your goals so that the most important ones are at the top of the list.  If you have goals that you want to meet but the deadlines you assigned have past, contemplate why you missed those deadlines.  Did something unexpected come up that prevented you from meeting it?  Did you forget that you had that goal?  Was the goal too ambitious or unrealistic?  Is there some kind of fear or apprehension that is preventing you from tackling a particular goal?  You may want to record your thoughts in a journal so you can better understand where you are struggling and therefore be better equipped to address these challenges in the coming months.  Set new deadlines for your goals before moving to the next step.

3.       Make clear and feasible action plans for each of your goals

Breaking down each goal into actionable steps makes achieving big things less daunting, so on a separate sheet of paper for each goal, write down step by step what you need to do to achieve it.  Make sure that each step is a clear-cut task that you can schedule.  Now schedule it!  If you have a calendar that you use, record the steps on the calendar with due dates and reminders.  I use Google Calendar.  Our very own Marilyn from Pulp Sushi introduced me to a great organizational app called Wunderlist.  You can create a separate list for each goal and it will feel so good to cross each step off the list as you complete each task.

4.       Commit to reviewing your goals regularly

It’s really easy to let time go by and not work toward your goals if you forget what they are.   When you review your goals regularly, they will remain at the forefront of your mind and it will be more likely that your daily actions are those that lead you to accomplish those goals.  Added bonus is that if it’s in your conscious mind, then it will be in your sub-conscious mind too.  You may even come up with powerful ways to meet your goals while you are sleeping!  If you often wake up in the morning with ideas, you may want to keep a pen and paper near your bed so that you can write these genius ideas down as soon as you wake up.

5.       Be your own cheerleading squad

Even if you haven’t been able to put a green check mark next to any of your goals, be compassionate with yourself.  Negativity and beating yourself up is not going to help you achieve your goals.  Congratulate yourself on your re-commitment to meeting your goals and think positively about the coming months.  Remember that you are the custodian of your life and you have the power and the will to achieve what you set out to do. 

6.       Visualize your success

Spend at least 5 minutes visualizing what your life will be like when you have accomplished your list of goals.  What will it feel like?  How will your life be different?  Don’t just imagine it, but put yourself there and feel the emotions.  Believe that you have already attained your goals.  If you can do this exercise every day, it will reinforce all of the previous steps you have taken to get on the Goal Train and cruise to your destination.

What I realized when I did my re-assessment of my goals, is that I have way too many of them and they were too ambitious.  I didn’t leave any room for real life to happen.  I’m paring down my list and putting more focus on the ones that are the most important to me.

In revisiting your goals, was there anything you changed? What insights did you gain in your evaluation of your progress so far?  What goals have you accomplished this year?  I’d love to hear about your successes and wins!

Take Action Now!  Revisit your goals then leave a comment below.

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