I love this celebration. We can look back on all the blessings from the year before and anticipate what’s to come.
I also love this time, because during this time of reflection I take part in the goal setting that so many others do.
I know some people hate this tradition…
Why don’t they just do these things throughout the year?
People always start their goals but then stop after the first couple weeks.
I don’t want to feel disappointed.
If you don’t like it that is fine, but I have found it to be very beneficial for me. I have found that being strategic about your goal setting will help you not only to achieve your goals (and know whether or not you have achieved them) but also help you have a more successful year over all.
I tell people to make categories and set SMART goals.
S: Specific (Be specific! “Be a better husband”. Okay. What do you mean by that? Be better at apologizing? Take your sweetie on more dates? If so, how often? Find time to prioritize her above other things? How so? Be better with chores? Which ones? Bring her more flowers? How often? What is your goal? Be specific!)
M: Measurable (Make it quantifiable! “Get in better shape”. What do you mean by that? Do you want to lose weight? If so, how much? Do you want to get stronger? If so, how will you quantify that? By how much you can lift? How fast you can run? Studies show that you are much more likely to achieve your goals if you make them measurable.)
A: Attainable (How will you attain your goal? Is it practical? In trying to achieve your goal does it make you a better person and/or help others? Or would attaining this goal to more harm than good?)
R: Realistic (Similar to attainable, yet more focused on whether or not it is achievable. Set goals that are within reach otherwise you will be too discouraged or frustrated and may give up before you even get close. I’ve heard the expression, “shoot for the moon because even if you miss you’ll end up among the stars” and there is some truth in that. But if the “moon” is not realistic for YOU, you will experience failure to launch and not get anywhere.)
T: Time (When will you complete these goals by? So you were specific and quantified that you want to lose 25 pounds this year… does that mean you want to lose 2 pounds per month? Or asses it on a quarterly basis and try to lose 6-ish pounds every 3 months?)
I know this is not a revolutionary idea and that there are similar acronyms out there but that is the one that I use.
The categories I use are: Spiritual, Emotional, Mental, Physical, Financial, Work, and Other.
Let me give you examples of each with my goals for this year…
Here is a few I have from this category for 2016…
-Pray with my son every night
-Start each morning on my knees and in prayer
-Do at least once a week Devotion with Annalisa
-Find a home church in San Bernardino County.
For this category it can be something you want to work on yourself personally (such as patience, anger, stress management, etc) or could be with the relationships between you and others. For example:
-Be the first to apologize after arguments (let go of pride)
-Take Annalisa on a date at least once per week
-Call parents at least once per week to check in and to say I love you
For this section I include any goals that will make use of my brain. In the past I have included things such as learning a new language/instrument, achieving, a certain GPA, or the amount of books I want to read in that year. This year most of my mental goals are Med school related (go figure):
-Be ranked in Top 10 in my class
-Get published in a Science Magazine
-Become President of an on campus club
Seems pretty straight forward. I have had a variety of different types of goals such as how much I want to earn, save, or donate in that year. I will maintain discretion for this category, but message me if you want more detail, tips, or anything else.
I have a lot of fun with this section. I know some of these are not very impressive and most readers could probably do these at ease but for me this helps me stay in shape and have fun with it. Otherwise going to the gym everyday would get pretty monotonous. Now I have games to play as I try to hit certain numbers throughout the year.
-Break world record in 1-minute ball pushups
-Run 1-mile stairs in under 7:30
-Run Cowles Mtn under 18:00
-Row 2000m in under 7:45
-Bar Hang 2 minutes
-500m swim in under 9:30
-1 mile run in under 6:00
-Bike 2.5 miles (if on stationary bike level 10) in under 6:30
Work is much more fun (and productive) when you have goals you are trying to achieve throughout the year. My real estate goal:
Sell $xx,xxx,xxx.xx worth of real estate (yes, there is an actual quantifiable/attainable number there. Just using discretion).
This is another really fun category, but oh so important. You need this area of your life. In the past I have had things such as “See the Eiffel Tower”, “Go to an international Disneyland”, “Start a Blog”, “Learn middle splits and handstand pushups”. For 2016, here are a few of mine:
-Take Posey/Pepper out 3x per week
-Travel to Yosemite
-Travel to a new country
It is also fun to look back on the goals from the previous year to see how many you accomplished and what areas of your life still need some work.
For my 2015, I achieved 16, and fell short on 27 of the 43 goals that I set.
Here are some of the ones I achieved:
-Get Annalisa Pregnant
-Wash/Rub Annalisa’s Feet at least once a week
-Get an A in my last two classes (O-chem, Physics)
-Take time for a quiet time at least once a week
-Save $xxx,xxx before starting school
-Complete over 15,000 Pullups in a year
-Bike 2.5 miles in under 7:30
-Sell over 2.5 million worth of real estate
-Tutor over 15 Private long term students
-Continue to work at the hospital 2+ days/week until Aug.
-Travel to at least 5 new countries (Went to Netherlands, Italy, Greece, France, and Switzerland).
-See the Eiffel Tower
-Start a Blog
-Walk dogs 3 times per week
-Find Annalisa a Piano Tutor
Good luck with your goal writing and please let me know what you think! Happy New Year!