Why I am Not Making Yearly Goals Anymore (And What I am Doing Instead)

Happy New Year! I had a wonderful couple of weeks of rest, family time and extra writing time! How about you? How was your Christmas and New Year’s? Good, I hope. Now, I am all geared up and ready to get going again with lots of projects and working on my goals. However, I’m not making goals this year and here’s why:

Several years ago, I switched from making “resolutions” to making “goals.” It was more of a mindset and perspective but it made a difference for me. I made those goals specific and measurable and I made great strides in accomplishing my goals.

Image by condesign (2014) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

Image by condesign (2014) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

Nevertheless, I sometimes got overwhelmed looking at the whole year and everything I want to do. (Anyone else?) Last year in 2016, especially, was a challenge for me. I struggled physically, emotionally, and felt like failure when I feel behind in my goals/plans. Some goals, like the making videos, were dropped altogether.  By October, I knew I needed to make a change but felt stuck or trapped.

That is why I decided to stop making yearly goals, and instead, I am made an outline. As writers, we often read or hear about the importance of using outlines to guide us in our writing endeavors. Thus, I sat down and wrote a broad outline of the goals I want to accomplish for 2017 and as the year progresses, I will fill in the gaps monthly and quarterly.

For example: My over-reaching goal for 2017 is to grow my authorpreneur business here at Carolda.com. One way I want to do this is by writing books and creating training programs. However, instead of focusing on the whole year and declaring that “I will write one book a week” and/or that “I will create 6 training programs this year;” I am going to break my goals down even further.

How does this look like?

Using the writing goal, I  made an outline of how many books I want to write each month for January, February, and March. Then, before the beginning of each month, I will fill in the outline with the details for the first book I want to write. Then, at the end of each quarter I will re-evaluate and see if my goal is realistic or needs tweaking.

For January, I want to create a planner and one short grammar guide. Thus, I took some time during the week between Christmas and New Year’s to fill in the blanks: Creating a working title, scheduling writing time, and outlining the book itself.

I am really excited about this plan and I can’t wait to see what the New Year will bring. I am ready to take better control and be more intentional with my life and business! How about you? What are your plans for the New Year? What are you doing to take control and make 2017 your best year yet? Do share!

P.S. I won’t bug you will posts every month and/or quarterly with updates, so don’t worry. 🙂

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Tweetable: Why I’m Not Making Yearly Goals Anymore

Goals for 2016

Several years ago, I stopped making “resolutions” and started creating specific, action-oriented goals. Maybe it was the change in terminology or maybe a change in perspective, I don’t know, but doing that made a huge difference for me.

I think the problem was that they resolutions were too general. I would start out great but then after a couple of months I would abandon them with frustration and feeling like a failure. However, when I started writing goals, I would do my best to be as specific as possible and use a checklist as I completed them. What a difference it made! No, it didn’t go perfectly all the time (nothing does!) but seeing the visual progress on the checklist helped me to keep going and I accomplished more than I ever thought I would.

My Goals for 2016

Image by pepa74 (2015) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

Therefore, of course, I am continuing that practice for 2016. I have some personal goals I want to accomplish but I also have some specific business goals, too. I share them here in hopes that they will inspire you as you think about and create your own goals for the new year:

1. Officially launch my author/writing business

2. Write and publish one guest post per month

3. Create at least two videos or video series per month

4. Read at least one business or writing book per month

5. Post to social media at least 3x per week (Mostly to Facebook & LinkedIn, I think.)

6. Post to carolda.com at least 2 times per week.

7. Join 2 support groups/master minds and attend at least one virtual/on site conference this year

I think seven to ten goals are plenty to start with. I will probably revise or add to these as the year goes by. I am also planning to do an update in June to help keep me accountable.

What are your goals for 2016? Do share in the comments!