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Personal Goals

A Goal Check In and Monthly Reflection Questions

February Reflection It’s the end of the month and it is time to do a little reflection on what worked and what didn’t. (Tomorrow is Leap Day which should totally be a national holiday just because it is so cool.) I have some goals that I’m working on and I thought I’d check in on those and share the 5 questions I use to go over how the month went and to reset the next month.

Personal Goal Check In:

Road Trip: I’ve taken one on my own, but I have yet to plan one with my husband. April is looking like a good time so I’ll start this month making that happen. (So, nope.)

Overnight Hike: We were all set to meet with a friend to talk through this and then we got snow. Have to get on this to get out before May. (Nope.)

Eat Less and Move More: Honestly I am a weenie with cold weather, but I did make an appointment with a personal trainer for March 7th. (Progress.)

Easy Garden: It’s still winter. I’m not stressing. (Nope.)

Sit with Natalie Goldberg: I’ve put the deposit down and am all set to go to Santa Fe in September with Sarah. I am so excited to make this lifelong goal happen. (Happening!)

Make Art: I’m totally making art. I’ve completed four pieces and I’m working on my fifth. It is so fun to just work with all the supplies I’ve had all of these years. I really like how they are all turning out. If you want to see, follow me on Instagram, I show them there as I work on them (usually in terrible lighting because I sneak in working on art in the evenings). (Happening!)

Coffee Dates with Friends: This has happened! I’ve had a coffee date every month with someone that I love love. It has been so good to make this happen. Every single time my heart fills up with happy. (Happening!)

Paint the Front Door: This will happen when it warms up. Still leaning towards yellow. It just seems happy. (Nope.)

Score Card: Nope’s: 4 vs. Yep’s: 4 – not bad for February

Keynote Speaker Business Goal Check In:

Speak at 6 New Events: I just got back from speaking about branding at the Oklahoma Women’s Blogger Mini Conference which was a great opportunity to meet new women. One woman said she decided to go to the conference because she knew I was speaking. Nice to hear! (I’ve spoken at 2 new events so far this year – 4 to go.)

Finish Book: Honestly. I just need to schedule this in my planner. Writing time. I think I can have it done by May if I schedule it in.

Find Agent: I found who I would like to work with and now I am sort of stalking them online. You know, like a creeper.

Create 4 New Passive Income Products: I have two that I am playing with and a whole new business idea which is big and awesome. I’m thinking about pitching it at a 60 Second Pitch contest, but I’m hesitant to let my idea into the world not fully formed. We shall see.

Twelve Guest Posts/Interviews: I have an interview request in my inbox and I guest posted on Jerusalem Greer’s beautiful blog. 10 more to go.

Find a Mentor: Nope. No nibbles. No idea of who this would look like. Can I find a Cheryl Strayed, Oprah, Brene Brown, Shonda Rhimes, Elizabeth Gilbert mash-up? That would be amazing. Is that you?

Build Reputation/Relationship: I had an epic fail of this a few weeks ago. I literally made someone want to run away. Really. It wasn’t pretty. SO, I realize that this work is ongoing. It’s funny. I’m not interested in being nice just to be nice, but I am interested in being kind and listening more than I talk. Remembering that in the moment is what is needed. Work in progress for sure!

Build Webinars: I’m at one a month and I just need to do two a month. This can happen. Easy. Peasy.

Score Card: Nope’s: 4 vs. Yep’s: 4 (Remember, goals don’t happen all at once. They are works in progress.

Succulents for Spring #30DayChallenge Progress

This month I did a challenge to LOVE MY PLANNER. I know that sounds silly, but when I don’t use my planner I don’t stay as focused. In January I had terrible allergies and then a massive cold and I just resented my planner. In February I wanted to love it, work it, write in it and be one with it. I was about an 85% success with this. There were days that I didn’t want to love it – a planner means you have to plan and get shit done and some days you don’t (or at least I don’t) want to do that. Mostly, though, I was on it. I was more focused. I set up a Bullet Journal to handle ongoing notes (a comp book with an index, nothing fancy) and I really dove into planning my days. Stuff got done. A lot of stuff. Yay for challenges that remind you that habits make a difference. If you want to do a #30DayChallenge we have a great, supportive, free Facebook group you can join. Just email me asking to join.

Artwork in Progress Questions to Reflect on the Month

One of the biggest differences of successful people and, really, just people who are moving forward in a way that you can tell is that they set aside a little time to reflect on how things are going. This doesn’t have to be an epic session. This can be a cup of coffee worth of reflecting time.

  1. What were last month’s wins? What made you feel like a success. These could be REALLY small things like being on top of your laundry or big things like getting a grant report in on time.
  2. What is leftover from this month that is lingering and just needs to get done? This could be a project that didn’t get finished or one that didn’t even get started despite the best intentions. These are things that you still want/need to do.
  3. What did you plan to do that you just need to let go of? Sometimes we have great ideas that really don’t continue to get us excited. Maybe its a relationship, a feeling that we are carrying around or a project that just isn’t working. Can you list it and just ditch it?
  4. How did the month, overall, make you feel? Yep. Let’s get touchy feely for just a minute. Were you sick and you just couldn’t get your mojo on? Were you on fire for most of the month and so happy that you could burst? Maybe you had on again and off again days? Spend a little time thinking about how you felt overall.
  5. Summarize the month over all. Just a paragraph, emoji, thumbs up, whatever it means to you to summarize your month so you can move onto the next month feeling better about your life and work.

Whew. That’s a lot. I just wanted to be honest here this year about how things are going with my goals and show you the process I take for myself to close the month out. You can’t do all of the things (which is why my goals are reachable), but you can take stock of what is working and give yourself a moment to reflect on where you want to spend your time and energy. This is your life. Live it with intention and see what path that brings you down. I know that it has added to my happiness (which is all I’m really pursuing!)

Why Bother With Personal Goals

Personal Goals A question came up yesterday for #AskJackieAnything about why should an entrepreneur, business owner, nonprofit leader, or anyone, really, have personal goals when they have business goals already. They totally understand the business goals. It moves you forward and quite possibly brings more cash into the coffers, but why have personal goals, too. Isn’t that just too overwhelming?

Let Me Share Part of My Story

When I worked a corporate job and later when I was running an art school I didn’t make any goals for myself that weren’t work related. I worked long hours and totally committed myself to my job. Which was great except I knew that something was missing. It was like I was half a person. At the time – the 90’s and early 2000’s personal goals or even a personal life weren’t encouraged. Work. That is all that was important.

Don’t get me wrong. Work is totally important and if you are lucky enough to have work that feels like play you are ahead of the curve. Either way though work isn’t enough. Work is just one aspect of who you are as a human. It takes care of your financial well being and professional success, but it isn’t the whole shebang.

I found myself burned out. I resented my work. I was a shell of a person. Sad. Tired. Nothing to look forward to. Depressing, right?

Personal Goals Help My Professional Goals

I get that there are only so many hours in the day and a lot of those are filled with working. That is life and I don’t begrudge it anymore because I plan time to work on my personal life. I plan exercise, travel, time making art, and whatever else I want to make my whole life more full. That time, achieving my personal goals, is well spent because I’m a happier more whole person.

Everyone has 30 minutes a day to do something. If you gave up TV what time would you have? Yesterday I did 15 minutes of silent meditation in the car waiting for my dog to get back from doggie day care (don’t judge, it saves me from going insane with his puppy antics). I can find pockets of time for myself throughout the day and plan for more time just like I plan meetings, events and other business ideas.

Plus, the time I spend achieving my personal goals influences my work by creating a happier person and hopefully creating new connections in life and in my brain. When I feel like a winner I can bring that attitude to everything I do.

So, run that 5K, commit to learning to take better photographs, take up contra dancing, learn an instrument, study meditation, take yoga – whatever it is make it a goal and make it happen. We are more than our work and by living rich, full lives we can bring that to everything we do.

Have something you want to try? Join the free #30DayChallenge Facebook group. Just email me and I’ll send you an invite.