Goal Setting for 2021

It’s the last month of 2020. It’s time to review how we did against our plans in 2020 and to set our plan for 2021. 

What did you do well this year? What didn’t go well this year? What could you have done differently? The answers to these questions are going to be very helpful for next year’s plan as it will give you data points to consider when framing your yearly plan. Take some time to reflect and get it all down on paper.

At this point, you might be thinking that I’m nuts and that I must live under a rock because it’s 2020, and there was a pandemic, and all kinds of other things happening, that made it impossible for you to follow your plan or set goals. I assure you, I’m not nuts. I know, without a doubt, that our thoughts create our results and that circumstances such as pandemics, do not. Not executing your plan to achieve your goal was a choice you made based on a thought that you had about your circumstances. I want you to own it and understand it, but don’t judge yourself harshly for it. 

How can we make our goal as good as done for 2021? 

Pick your goal(s) for the year. Having more than three goals at a time for me is a recipe for stress, anxiety and quite frankly, mediocrity. Generally, I stick with one goal as a priority until I get into a habit or routine (66 days) that will ensure my success. Spend some time refining your goals and writing about why they are important to you. Be specific around timelines or other pertinent metrics.

Write down all the actions you know of right now that you will have to take to achieve the goal. Write down as much as you can. Don’t indulge in “I don’t know”. Take a guess. It doesn’t have to be perfect. You can refine as you go.

Carefully consider how you will have to feel to meet this goal. Is it committed, determined, uncomfortable, calm, or something else? Really dig deep here.

What will you have to be thinking to generate the feeling you have identified? Experiment with different thoughts until you find one that is believable and generates the feeling you want.

Write that thought down and put it all over the place where you can see it multiple times a day. Practice saying it over and over until it becomes ingrained and a habit. Once it’s a habit, the goal is as good as done. This is where the magic happens….thoughts drive results.

Revisit your why’s on a daily basis. Refine them as you go, but keep them in the forefront to remind yourself why this goal is important.

Revisit the entire process at the beginning of every month to ensure that the thoughts and feelings are still working for you. If not, tweak.

Sounds simple, right? It is, but it requires a commitment to do the process. I used this process in 2020 to stop a 38-year smoking habit and lose 35 pounds. 

You can achieve any goal you want to with this process. I know you are capable of doing so. You just have to believe it.

PS: If stress and anxiety are getting in the way of achieving your goals, come on over to The High Achiever’s Stress Management Collective to get tips, tricks and live content to help you replace stress and anxiety with calm, confidence, and productivity.

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