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Entries in goals (2)

Tuesday
Jan242017

Holding Yourself Accountable {In Three Easy Steps}

I love setting goals and making lists of potential accomplishments. Each year, I write down several personal and business related goals for the upcoming 12 months. This list always includes an income goal for the year. In the past, I’ve written it down in December or January and not given it much consideration thereafter. Until, of course, the next calendar year rolls around and it’s time to do it again. Then, I would inevitably realize that I did not meet the goal I set. Not even close.

This year, I wanted things to be different. And, so far they are. I’ve exceeded my January goal by more than 46 percent and we still have a week to go! How did this happen? Was it just blind luck? I don’t think so. I implemented a couple changes and I credit them with my successful start to 2017.

First, I made sure that my goal was realistic. In past years I’ll admit I was guilty of just writing down a number that looked and felt good. I didn’t really give it much thought or research what it would take to get there. This year was different from the get-go. I looked at my numbers from the recent past and tried to gauge what I thought would be decent, acceptable growth from last year. I settled on a number 40 percent higher than 2016. Although a little lofty, I wanted to challenge and push myself, especially since I felt I didn’t do that last year.

Second, I broke down my goal into manageable chunks. By this I mean I simply turned my annual goal into a monthly one. I simply divided my goal by 12 to see what it would take for me to get there. This accomplished a couple things. First, it gave me clarity as to whether my goal really was realistic and achievable. I thought it was. Secondly, it forced me to think through various sales scenarios. What would I actually have to sell to meet this goal? What promotions could I offer to fit with my overall editorial calendar for the year? While there wasn’t detailed planning taking place, I did think through the year and what it would take to stay on track.

It makes sense to me that if I can consistently meet a monthly goal, I will be considerably above my total goal by December. Many of you may be in similar situations. Much of my income is generated at the end of the calendar year, before and during the holiday season. Meeting a monthly goal during the first half of the year will hopefully take some pressure off when it comes to promoting our Holiday Gift Guide and other similar promotions.

Lastly, I made a commitment to keep my goal front and center. Each week I create a to-do list so that I can keep track of tasks that need accomplished. At the top right corner, I wrote down my monthly goal. Each time I’ve made a sale this month, I’ve crossed it out and wrote what’s remaining to meet my goal. Today, I was able to cross the number off completely and instead write how much I had exceeded it by. Wow, that was a good feeling! Now, more than ever, I am committed to slaying the 2017 income goal I had set.

It has been easier than I thought to stay focused. By being realistic, breaking down my goal into manageable pieces and keeping it front of mind, I’ve been able to be successful. I’m looking forward to continuing the trend throughout the year. I’d love to hear from you! Tell us about how you hold yourself accountable in the comments!

Tuesday
Jan212014

New Year Resolutions or Goals?

Do you typically make a New Year’s Resolution? Or resolutions? In the past, I haven’t been good about resolutions. They always seemed too broad or too narrow. So last year I tried something new. I wrote down my overall goals for the year instead.

It worked out pretty well. Even though I didn’t complete all of them {only about four of the 13 to be exact} I still categorize it as successful.

·         Take a couples only vacation. Done. That was easy and fun!

·         Read a book. Did so on said vacation. Even read two! That should count for bonus points!

·         Write an E-book. Nope, didn’t do that. But, I’ve made progress toward that end goal and it’s still on my list for 2014.

·         Lose 30 pounds. Although I didn’t lose that much, I lost at least half of that and am much closer to my goal than I was when I started.

And, that’s why I feel successful. Success equals consistently moving forward despite setbacks or detours.

We all have detours and setbacks, both in our personal lives and in our business lives. Do you let them take you completely off track or just derail you for a few moments? Either way, I think it is how you ultimately deal with the setback that matters. No matter how severe, if you are able to refocus and push forward then that’s success.

What are your goals for 2014? Some of my 2013 items have migrated over to my new list. I’m ok with that. Some of mine have grown. In 2013, I wanted to run my first 5k. I did. In 2014, I aim to run my first 10k.

I haven’t allowed anything to fall from sight. If it was a priority then, I’ve at least given the thought and consideration to whether is still should be a priority now. I didn’t cross any uncompleted items off, but did do some slight editing. Some things I’ve copied verbatim over to 2014, {like read a book} just because I enjoyed it and don’t want to lose my motivation to do it again!

And, I’ve added some new goals. That’s what growth is all about, right? Expanding our horizons, trying new things and enhancing the world that we live in. Some of my goals are frivolous and materialistic. That’s ok. Others are more community and service centered, which I think is great.

Regardless of whether I complete these goals; regardless of whether they make me a better, more balanced person; regardless of whether my business soars; I’m happy I took the time to write them down. Self reflection is always beneficial. And, now I have all of you to be accountable to, too ;)