Happy New Year! New year, new start, new goals. Goal setting helps us focus and keep moving forward, even if it’s bit by bit. Positive Psychology tells us, “In the end, you can’t manage what you don’t measure and you can’t improve upon something that you don’t properly manage. Setting goals can help you do all of that and more.”
And yet, even after setting SMART goals and gaining feedback from her colleagues, this CEEKer found herself falling short throughout the year. So, we’re going a step further with this challenge. This January, we challenge you not only to set goals, but also to plan how to achieve them and then plan to embrace failure to learn and get back on track when needed.
How to set goals
- Set your goals. What kind of goal do you want to set? Thousands of words on the internet speak to crafting the perfect goal. (Get started here, here, and here.) SMART? Performance or Mastery? Difficult or Easy? Approach or Avoidance? Whatever framework you choose, goal setting should start with a vision for your life and what you want to do. Write your goals down. Also state them in the positive and be detailed about what you want to accomplish.
- Write an action plan. How will you get from your current present to your envisioned future? Write down all the steps you will need to achieve your goal. Include details like where, when, and how. Take your plans a step further by including trusted colleagues who can give you useful feedback and help you stay accountable. Also plan to incorporate new information as you go.
- Anticipate inevitable change. What happens life impacts your action plan? Get ahead by planning now for change. Revisit and revise plans or goals as necessary throughout the year. Celebrate successes and accept that some adjustments are natural and okay. Take time to consider barriers, challenges, and weak points in your action plan. These will guide your contingencies.
Goals can help you plan and stay motivated. Share your goals with people who will help you and keep you accountable. Revisit them to stay on track or change them if you need to. And as always, CEEK a Better Way in 2023!