Yesterday I invited you to spend some quiet time reflecting on your habits (the things that you do consistently on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis) and where they are leading you. Today I’d like to take it a step further and work on a little goal setting.
Now, you can just randomly set goals if you really want to. And maybe there’s a goal that’s absolutely obvious to you (‘stop smoking’ for instance) but if you want to go deeper I have a few suggestions to direct your focus when setting goals. Writing prompts like these help activate and organize my thoughts a little better and I hope you find them (in conjunction with the list of habits that you made yesterday) useful as well.
The most simple list of categories is.
Mind, Body, Spirit.
This is absolutely enough and could be the best option because limiting your goals to a small number could be the best way to insure that you’ll reach them!
Another option is this list, which I found a couple of years ago. I like that these questions are more specific and that they help me think beyond my normal territory.
A skill I’d like to learn ____________.
A person I hope to be more like ____________.
A good deed I’m going to do ____________.
A place I’d like to visit ____________.
A book I’d like to read ____________.
A letter I’m going to write ____________.
A new food I’m going to try ____________.
I’m going to be better at ____________.
My third list is a little more extensive but it touches on all of the important areas of our lives. Last year I used this list and, while I did make progress in each area, I didn’t necessarily hit my goals. This year I think I’ll prioritize this list and choose just a few areas to focus on at first.
Family – Is your relationship with your family everything that you want it to be? Are you spending quality time with them, do they KNOW that you love them, do YOU know how you can help them succeed? Do whatever it takes to draw closer to them – even if you have to schedule time in your calendar (and lock away all mobile devices!).
Social – Time with friends (in real life) can have such a huge impact on life satisfaction and even your health. Besides prioritizing time nurturing your established friendships consider ways that you can make new friends as well – you might find a new ‘bestie’ when you finally join that new dance class!
Financial – Do you need to increase your income or curtail your spending? Maybe you have a huge amount of debt hanging over your head that’s stressing you out. There are so many programs to help you get control of your finances (many of them are free). No price can be put on the peace of mind that comes from being on top of your finances!
Career – Do you love your job? Do you feel confident in your ability to move ahead? Was there something in your last performance evaluation that you need to address? Maybe you want to go an entirely different direction. Whatever it is, take steps toward improvement – you spend the majority of your life at your job and it should be as rewarding as possible.
Spiritual – This might be the most important area of your life whether you actively practice a religion or not but it’s also often the easiest area of life to ignore. Nurturing your spirit can help you get everything else in perspective and keep you grounded.
Physical – I imagine that this is the most popular area for resolutions or goal setting each January. Do whatever you need to do to make your body stronger and more healthy this year. If it’s been awhile and you can’t find time for exercise, start doing your Minute Movements right away.
Intellectual – Is there a new series or genre of books that you’d like to explore? Maybe you’ve always wanted to learn another language or how to build birdhouses. Learning new things makes us more interesting – to ourselves and to other people. Try something new this year!
Pick a list and do a little brainstorming today, think big and believe in yourself. Tomorrow I’ll have a few tips to share on how to set great goals that you can achieve but today just focus on your dreams.