Looking for a fresh start this January? Here are the details of how to plan your year in 2021.
Welcome to the January Planning Series! This is day one of a five-day blog post series about planning out your time for this year. Here we are in a brand new, fresh, shiny year. It’s 2021, and there’s so much hope for this to be a better season than the last.
After coming out of a long hibernation (assuming you are like most of us who stayed home for the majority of 2020), it can be easy to continue with the way things are.
So much of 2020 was just about getting through it. Goals may have fallen by the wayside in favor of just trying to pay the bills or cope with not being near loved ones.
However, we are in the midst of something new. And although it will still take a while to get things back to normal, it’s time to move forward with tentative new plans and dreams for 2021.
Here’s how to begin this next chapter with motivation, inspiration, and the plans that will help you crush your goals.
Why Goals are Important
Yes, we all know the basics of why goals matter. They give us purpose and give us something to strive for. But what about the other reasons?
Dig deep here. Why do you personally need goals? I need goals because they show me my progress and shine a light on where I’m going. Think of the particulars of why you want to improve areas of your life. What’s your reason? It could be for your family, yourself, or others.
How to Set Goals
First, gather up all those ideas and visions for 2021. Think about the many what-ifs, hobbies, and savings challenges, and then personalize it.
For example, “save $5000 by December” is a general goal; it could be anyone’s. But “save $5000 to give me the cushion I need to pursue my side hustle full time” – now that’s personal. Don’t just state the goal, state why.
How many goals should you have? That’s up to you, but I would recommend 2-3 big plans and a few smaller goals at most. If you overwhelm yourself, it’s more likely you won’t accomplish any of your objectives for the year. Instead, keep the focus on a smaller number, and make a more significant impact.
How to Break Your Goals into Smaller Pieces for Crazy Success
After you decide on goals, you have to break them down into smaller bits. This is a bigger discussion in tomorrow’s post, but write down your goals for now.
Now list, in order, the steps you need to take to accomplish them.
This gives you a path to follow. If you look up and see a mountain, that’s not attainable. But if you add steps to it, you simply place one foot in front of the other. Soon you’ll be at the top, looking at how far you’ve come.
After writing this down, place it somewhere you’ll see it. You’re going to need it for tomorrow’s post!
How to Get More Done Than You Thought Possible
Not having time is what holds many back from achieving their dreams. We’ve all said it. “I’d love to do that, but there’s no time in my schedule.”
First, automate everything you can. If your goal is financial, automate your savings. If it’s fitness related, get an app that reminds you to keep moving. Don’t leave this to chance! Use resources to help you succeed.
Next, may I introduce you to the idea of goal hour? I’m convinced that most of us have an extra hour in the day somewhere. It could mean staying up later or getting up early, but for most of us, it’s there if we’re willing to give up scrolling social media or a TV show.
Find it and claim it as your goal hour. Get creative. Use commuting time and audiobooks for reading goals or biking to work—meal prep for an hour a week to help you eat healthier. Figure out what it will take and go for it.
How to Let Go of the Habit that’s Holding You Back
As was mentioned, along with finding the goal hour, you may find something else. That sneaky time stealer. YouTube, Netflix, talking on the phone (if anyone still does that), or whatever. It’s something that’s generally unproductive and doesn’t add much value to your life. I think we all know what our own time stealer is if we look closely.
Make it a point to replace this habit with your goal hour to take control of your time. It might feel frustrating at first, but soon you’ll find it’s worth it. And you don’t have to completely cut out your time waster habits; just free up those extra minutes that your future self will appreciate.
You can create goals or make resolutions at any time. But January is especially popular. This year, in particular, let’s move forward with the dreams that seemed too big last year.
Challenge yourself to do more, be present more, and surprise yourself with new hobbies. Have a great 2021! And tune in tomorrow for ideas about how to plan your month.