I was never one for New Year’s resolutions.
Let me rephrase. I was never one for keeping New Year's resolutions.
I’d always been a go-getter professionally, but when it came to those traditional, self-imposed goals (run a marathon, quit social media, yada yada yada), I always seemed to drop the ball.
I tried all the various tactics to improve my chances of achieving them but nothing really stuck, and after years of trial and error, I finally figured out why that is.
In my mind, if I didn’t achieve a goal by an arbitrary timeframe that I set for myself, I just gave up on it (kind of like when you’re on a diet and give yourself one treat, then decide the rest of the day is shot so you just binge on junk food because “you can start over tomorrow”). Yeah, we’ve all been there.
What I finally realized is goals are meant to evolve. They aren’t something you just put on a piece of paper to hang on your refrigerator and let them be. They need to be pursued and evaluated time and time again as you continue down the path of accomplishing them.
Reaching your goals can be hard during normal times. And these are definitely not normal times. With everything going on right now with coronavirus, it may be easy to feel like you just want to give up on the goals you’ve established for yourself this year, but in fact, the opposite is true. Now is the time to step back, evaluate and reflect on the ones that still matter.
Jot down or find the goals you have in place, and start reviewing them to see what’s worth pursuing, and what’s best to leave in the past.
We could all use a little pick-me-up right now, and reassessing your goals can be a great way to put your anxious mind on productivity and ways to improve yourself, your family, and your career. You’ll be amazed at what this kind of exercise can do for your mood.
If you need help getting started, especially during these turbulent times, below is a quick guide to help you reevaluate your goals.
What to Think About When Reevaluating Your Goals
This worldwide pandemic has really highlighted the things that matter in life. It’s allowed people to reflect on what’s important to them, and to let go of the small things.
Decide which goals are worth reassessing and pursuing by answering these questions:
What is your Why?
Understanding why you’re doing something should really be at the heart of anything that you do, but uncovering this when you're reassessing your goals is imperative in order to decide if the goal is still meaningful to you or not.
Whether you’re a parent or not, we’re all familiar with the toddler “why” game, where they ask “why” about every.single.thing. Do this with yourself to get to the real “why” with each of your goals and see if it still resonates with you. If it does, put a plan in place to move forward. If not, let it go.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention one of LifeStarr’s key concepts for putting a plan in place here: For every goal you end up moving forward with, you should ask yourself what has to happen next in order to get to that goal. If you look at your goals from this perspective, you’ll continue to move forward and make progress.
What’s standing in the way of achieving a goal?
This is where it gets tricky. You need to unveil whether the reason you aren’t achieving your goals is because they aren’t relevant anymore or because they’re hard. If it’s the latter, don’t let that deter you. Remember, goals are supposed to be challenging, and the more obstacles you have to overcome, the more rewarding the achievement of that goal will actually be.
However, if it really doesn’t matter anymore, or pertain to your life, it’s OK to decide to drop it so that you can put your attention elsewhere.
What type of emotion does your goal induce?
Emotions are running high right now, and can be a good indicator about how you feel about a plethora of things in your life. If you have negative feelings towards a goal, go back to the why. If you’re feeling good about a goal, take advantage of it and continue pursuing it. It could be a low hanging fruit and an easy win for yourself right now.
Are your goals SMART?
Not to overplay the idea of SMART goals, as it may be the most common acronym in the goal setting world, but it really does help to hone in on setting achievable goals, so ask yourself, are they:
Review these questions to help you reassess whether or not these goals are meant for you. Ask yourself if you’re still growing as a result of the goals you’ve sent in place. Use these tools to help you put a plan in place to move forward.
Focus on the Journey, Not Perfection
Once you have the goals you’re going to move forward with in place, visualize them and have a clear picture of what the outcomes are. Keep that picture really clear in your head so that you know what achievement looks like once you get there.
I have found it helpful to write them down somewhere (actually, shameless plug warning, I put them in LifeStarr) so that I can actively keep track of my progress. It makes my goals less abstract.
Remember that while the end goal may be present in your mind, the perceived path to get there may change and you need to be OK with that. You’ll likely experience bumps in the road, but have a plan in place on how to overcome them.
Along with the obstacles, you’ll also experience milestones which you have to celebrate. The journey itself can be just as amazing as the outcome, if not more so.
Pay close attention to the obstacles and milestones, they’ll help you track your progress.
Reevaluating Is Not Giving Up
Remember, taking an inventory of your goals, and potentially dropping a few of them in the process, is not giving up. In fact, this process can be your fast pass to success because you’re able to actually focus on what matters to you.
The LifeStarr team wants to help you achieve your goals. We’re all about helping you conquer the little things so that you can achieve the big things. As I mentioned, many people use LifeStarr not only as a way to organize their to-do lists, but also as a way to house their personal and professional goals all in one place. Each task in LifeStarr has the functionality to incorporate sub-tasks, so if you have a task that’s one of your goals, the subtasks can be the individual steps to get you there, deadlines and all!
If you’re motivated to get the ball rolling, be sure to click the button below to sign up for a free account.