**Original Article Written in December, 2014
Here it comes! The New Year, 2015! And with the New Year, comes the new you. It is a time to start fresh and make something happen. What do you want to “make happen” this year? How do you want to get ahead in your personal life and/or professional career? Let’s begin 2015 with a bang and get “fired up” to take care of business!
Ok, so how do you reach your goals and better yourself, personally and professionally? And how do you get excited and motivated to carry your goals through to the finish line? I don’t know about you, but New Year’s resolutions never quite work for me. Setting simple resolutions (lose weight, start eating healthy, get that promotion at work) can feel too large and too general, and these feelings make me unlikely to achieve them. And, inevitably, “resolutions” are often broken by the end of January, if they survive that long. These broad, broken promises to yourself can make you feel like a failure before the year even gets started! I prefer to start the year off on a more positive note, feeling motivated to take on the New Year with great energy.
Start this New Year with a different approach. Goal Setting! Big or small. Tough or simple. Goals, by definition, are “the object of a person's ambition or effort; an aim or desired result.” Sounds pretty targeted to me. Putting a big red bullseye on what you want to accomplish, by nature, makes you more focused and motivated to plan your course of action. I’m feeling motivated just writing about it!
To get started choosing and defining your goals, you will need to create a road map, a plan that will clearly lead you to the finish line! These next steps will help you create your own roadmap to success.
1) Determine what you would like to accomplish
Really think about your goals and what you want to achieve throughout the year. These can be both personal and professional. This process is a bit of a “brain dump” – consider all of the things you have been thinking about getting done and have yet to get started. Write every single one of them down, even if they aren’t concrete or task-oriented. We will fine tune them in the next step.
2) List your three top priority goals
Look at your list and pick the top three goals that are the most important and you are most excited about. These are your bullseye goals! “Bullseye-ing” your top three instead of five or more will make it easier to put maximum attention on the right path. Print them out and post them in your bedroom, bathroom, office - anywhere you need a little reminder. Post them where you can see them every day. Visualizing your goals on paper, on your smart phone or on a white board, brings them to life.
3) Lay down a strategic plan
For each bullseye goal, write down how you are going to accomplish it with sub-goals, usually set in increments of time or task. Write these sub-goals into a bullseye goal plan, and, most importantly, check them off as you go.
Here is an example of one of my goals: Save $5,000 for home improvements by October. My plan is to put away $500 per month, or $250 per paycheck, then have a checklist for each time I put the money away. Another example: Start a new HR project : 1. List who you want on your project team 2. Set meeting date 3. Determine project deliverables. 4. Complete project plan by (set date) 5. Complete project by (set date)
Get in as much depth as you need to establish proper milestones along the way. When you have your plan in front of you, cross off or check off each task when it is complete. Nothing is a better motivator than being able to see your progress/accomplishments checked off and how close you are to the finish line! Get a big red marker and go for it!
4) Reward yourself
This is the best part. Make sure you pat yourself on the back for every task and milestone you complete. It is essential to give yourself some kudos to help you stay motivated and focused on the end result. No matter how small the task you have completed, you have moved closer to your goal. Once you have traveled through your roadmap to your bullseye goal, CELEBRATE!!!
2015 will be here before you know it! I would love to hear about your bullseye goals and the progress you area making throughout the year.