Ending the Year Right Part II
Hello, it's me again! I'm getting ready to jet off to Jamaica for a well-deserved vacation. But before I go, I want to help you close out the year right! This is part two of our two-part series reminding you that (a) you've still got time to work on goals and (b) you only have to choose one small step to get to work.
And speaking of those goals, let's take a look at them. What excites you about them now that you're looking at them 6 to 12 months after you made them? How do those goals allow you to live out your values?
It's hard to be motivated by goals that aren't aligned with your values. For example, wanting to lose weight is often a common goal in the new year, but why do people want to lose weight? Is it to meet current beauty standards? Increase self-esteem? Attract that partner you've been looking for? To be healthier and able to keep up with the little loved ones in your life? There are tons of reasons why, and we don't spend enough time understanding our personal why before determining goals.
Take me for an example. I used to have a goal of losing weight. And I found it hard to do so because losing weight had no real value to me. Once I started to craft goals through the lens of my values, the goal shifted. I have a value of Health/Enjoyment. To me that is being healthy because I feel better in my body and because I'm able to do more of the things I love with the people I love when I'm healthy. This is balanced with enjoyment. I am not saying no to fried deliciousness, cheesy gooiness or chocolatey desserts. That's not enjoyment to me! My goal shifted to listening to my body and letting it tell me when I'm hungry or full or when something doesn't settle right. It includes eating more vegetables and working out regularly throughout the week. If I lose any weight, great. If I don't, great. I'm still being a healthier me.
So my first tip for reviewing your current goals (to take action in the whole month of December you have left) or for creating goals for next year is to understand your why: make sure your goals align with your values. Doing this will make it a lot more likely you'll stick with your goals.
But wait Denée, didn't you mention this tip in the last blog? Why yes, I did! So glad you're paying attention. And I'm doubling down on the tip above (and on the tip below) because they are so key to achieving your goals.
I'm going to continue using the "I want to lose weight" goal as an example. How do you even go about doing that? What specific action steps do you take to achieve this goal? I want to lose weight is too vague. Just like, I want to be better with my money is too vague. The more specific and focused your goals are, the easier they are to achieve. So instead of "I want to lose weight," you could say, I want to work out three times a week so that I lose 20 lbs. by July. Or I want to each vegetables at every dinner. You want to be able to determine the first steps to achieving that larger goal of losing weight. Tip number two: the more specific and focused your goal, the easier it is to accomplish it.
I want to be clear that this tip does not mean you cannot have goals that are hard to measure. One of my goals for this year is: let go of getting things right on the first try. How do I measure that? It's not like weight where you can see the number on the scale or savings where you can see the number in your bank account. So I put myself in situations where there was no chance I could get things right on the first try: like my coaching certification training. That was a step to achieving my larger goal.
As you're reviewing your goals now, ask yourself: What is that specific first step I could take today to start achieving this goal?
If one of your goals is to get better with your money, I have a first step for you! This will help you feel accomplished by the end of this year and set you up for next year as well: check your bank account weekly. Put a notification on your phone to just take a look and take stock. How do you feel as you look at your account? What do you notice is different about your spending when you pay attention to your account? Just checking in regularly with your account will start you on the road to being better with finances.
You've got this. Don't forget that while you're looking at what has happened over the last year to also look at your accomplishments. You've done so much! Which is proof that you can do this too. All you have to do is take that first step. And I'll be here cheering you on.