Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Goals in 2014: Making Adjustments and Staying on Track

Why am I talking about goals at the beginning of February instead of the beginning of January like everyone else?  Because I am trying a few new things this year and I want to encourage others with what I’ve learned.

Setting goals is something I’ve done different this year. At the start of 2014 I asked myself, ‘where do I want to be by 2015?’ Asking that question and reflecting in 2013 helped me realize that I need to take action in order to make the changes I want to see in my life. I listed different categories, home, travel, personal etc. and then just wrote down realistic goals. For example, I would total love to completely redecorate my house, rip up flooring, replace all the doors, remodel my bathroom etc. But my time/money/skill set wouldn’t realistically allow me to do that. So instead I am focusing on what I can do, right now with what I have. This year I want to focus on making small changes in the kitchen, master bedroom and one of the guest rooms and some outdoor improvements. Of course life happens, just because I say those rooms are what I am concentrating on doesn’t mean that I can’t make changes in other areas of our home but picking just a few rooms/home projects makes my goals much more achievable and realistic.

Now that I have my big year long list I use it to make monthly and weekly goals.  At the beginning of each month a take a look at my 2014 goals and I use them to guide my list for the month.  Then each week I look over it and pick some specific tasks to work on that week. Breaking big goals into small steps is the best way to reach them. I know I am not the first person to think of this, but making myself do a weekly reflection keeps me on track.  I have definitely made more progress this year than I have in years past.

The weekly reflection of my goals has also allowed me to make adjustments when needed. Two of my 2014 goals required daily attention. I wanted to read the entire Bible and play piano every single day, but by mid-January I skipped a few days of Bible reading and then I found myself discouraged to continue since I was falling behind and finally I decided that something needed to change. Commitment wasn’t really the issue, I was still playing the piano daily and actually, I read the entire Bible over the course of 2010. The problem was I didn’t like the reading plan I was using. It skipped all around between different books of the Bible and I wasn’t feeling connected to it. So I decided that I needed to make some adjustments. I am now reading the Essential 100 plan, which can be found on the YouVersion app. It’s not a reading plan for the entire Bible, but I am really enjoying it. It keeps me in the Word everyday which is ultimately the most important part of this goal.

So my Bible reading plan is just an example. Do you know why you have fallen off track with your fitness goals? What about your financial goals. Now that the newness of 2014 has worn off I encourage you to make adjustments and even set some new realistic goals so you can make this your best year yet.

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