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Setting personal goals can sometimes feel overwhelming! It can be hard to decide what areas of your life to focus on and even harder to remain accountable to achieve them. These simple tips and habits will help you to dial in on the most important areas of your life, set measurable goals about them and remain accountable for following through with those goals. As you set your goals, have a peek below at my 6 Tips to Set (And Achieve) Your Best Personal Goals.

family goals with a family on the front porch

Game Changer Goals

To start the year off right, our family takes time to write out our annual goals and review our goals from the past year. I write them for our family as a whole, my personal growth and my professional life too. My system is simple, but this year I will be looking at my personal development goals differently. Hopefully, this will help you set better goals that result to big things!

Reason You Don’t Hit Your Personal Goals 

THE OLD WAY! For many of us, the goals we have set in the past never seem to pan out for a number of reasons:

  1. We have a bad habit of not reviewing the goals on a regular basis throughout the year.
  2. We don’t know why we want to achieve the goal.
  3. Not enough passion or reasons to motivate us into action.
  4. The goal is not specific enough.
  5. The goal seems too large and overwhelming, so we never start it.
  6. We don’t actually want it or put the hard work in to achieve it.
  7. We do not come up with a plan to make it a reality.

Sound familiar?! Me too! So here are a few simple habits I have implemented to try to stay on track with mine.

setting personal goals

Dreams Vs Goals 

It is so important to understand the difference between your dreams and goals. Knowing the difference will help you make an action plan which is the easiest way to get to your end result. 

DREAMS are the big picture or the end result of where you want to be.

GOALS are what do to get us there.

Think of your dream as the ultimate destination in your journey of life and your goals are the roadmap that will guide you to get there.

How do you know the difference between a goal and a dream? Simply ask yourself why you want to do what you are setting out to do. If the answer is to get closer to that overall dream, then it’s a goal. If the answer is because it’s what you want, then that is a dream!

This year when you are doing you are doing your personal goal setting, think hard about the dreams you have for your professional goals, mental health, and personal life. Ask yourself these questions and record your answers in a notebook or on a word document 

  1. Where and what do you want to achieve in the next 5 to 10 years or even in a lifetime?
  2. What choices or steps do you need to take to get where you want in the next 5 to 10 years, or even a lifetime?
spending time with family and goal setting family goals

With this in mind, the next step is to set your life goals and smaller goals too. Set different types of goals for different areas in your life. Think about your personal relationships, your own personal development, professional development and career goals. Set for both short-term goals and long-term goals for all of these areas.

K.I.S.S – Keep It Simple Sista

Set the kind of goals that get you to your dreams but keep them achievable too! You don’t want to defeat yourself before you have begun! Take fitness and nutrition for example, how many of you have started a ‘diet’ that is much too hard to maintain for any length of time and you find yourself falling off the wagon after only a few weeks or months of trying it? That feeling of failure or defeat doesn’t feel good and deflates your confidence. 

a family together on a porch after setting personal goals and family goals

So, this year, set realistic goals! For example, rather than wanting to completely change your whole way of eating, maybe you try to cut sugar for one week! One week and then you get to reward yourself. Then try and hit one more week.

Breaking it down into smaller more achievable time frames will be less overwhelming and help you not slip as easily.

Simple Habits Build Big Goals 

The track record of goal setting for most of us is less than great. Most of the time, we set goals but never really keep up any sort of daily/weekly steps to achieving them! The result is failure and disappointment. 

Instead, once you have all of your goals set, try to find daily HABITS you can create to reach them. These need to be simple enough that you do not lose interest in a month or two or find them too difficult to continue. What daily/weekly habits will get you to where you want to go faster? 

Although these habits may take a bit to become your everyday; once they do they can be game-changing. The next points are some of the habits I implement to continue to hit my goals.

special moments with a girl and her son reading and goal planning

15-Minute Daily Check-In For Personal Goals

Now that you have reassessed what your dreams are and set your specific lifetime goals, let’s start thinking of some habits that will help you hit them! 

First thing in the morning, it is a good idea to take 15 mins to assess your mood, intentions and goals. You will have much better time management and a more productive day if you have a plan in place and work with intention. 

It doesn’t need to be some long to-do list, just a quick overview of the daily tasks to see if they are going to get you closer to achieving that big goal down the road. If they aren’t, maybe reassess if they are worth doing. 

I also take a moment to think of 3 things I am grateful for and 3 positive things about myself. This sets you up for starting the day right!

Write it Down

Go and get yourself a new notebook and WRITE DOWN your goals/dreams and your daily Check-In! This will make you more accountable and more likely to complete your specific goals! I use a day timer so that I can have a daily space to write down my intentions, to-do lists and daily check-ins! 

Don’t put too much pressure on yourself with this activity. Try to do this during the weekdays and then take the weekends off! If you miss a day along the way, that’s ok! If you have trouble staying motivated, make sure to read my 7 good habits to stay motivated!

Make it Measurable

Setting a measurable goal CHECK-IN list is a great way to stay motivated with your goal setting. The best way to stay on track with this is to set a time frame once a month, if not once a week, to check in on how you are doing with your short term goals and long-term goals or even just our lives in general! 

Write a series of questions and have measurable categories that can be used to rate yourselves with on monthly check in’s. For example, I am going to choose about 4-8 of these categories that I will rate how I am doing on every check-in out of a 1-10 rating.

  • Family Relationships
  • Friend Relationships
  • Financial 
  • Professional
  • Adventure
  • Personal/Intellectual Development
  • Physical Health
  • Emotional/Spiritual Wellbeing
Cozy work space planning personal goals

Check In With Personal Goals Monthly

A new idea/habit our family is going to take on this year is measurable Monthly Check-Ins. Set a number of areas that you want to measure in your life. For example, you could have one for Career, Finances, Overall Happiness… etc. Once you have your categories in place, rate each one on a scale from 1 to 10 every month. Use a notebook or spreadsheet to track your answers each month.

As you begin to record your monthly answers, you will begin to see the areas in your life that have a lower score and will have a better chance of making changes for the better! Make sure to have your goals/dream list with you at every check-in, to see if how you are living is in alignment.

Set a standing appointment in your calendar to do this activity so that you take the time to do it and to keep yourself accountable!

You will be so surprised by how life-changing this little activity can be. AND If you want to make yourself accountable, find a friend or family member to do this activity with! There is just something about having someone to answer to that makes you push just a little bit more!

Family spending time together in thekitchen

Stay Positive

Mood, Meditation and Mindfulness, The BIG 3! In my 6 Essentials to a Happier Life post, I shared that I start every single weekday with a 15 min meditation and body check in and I strongly encourage you to do the same! 

This everyday habit is like going to the gym for my mind and makes me start the day feeling grounded and ready to take on what lies ahead. Take fifteen minutes each day to meditate (I love to do this first thing in the morning) and take a moment to see what type of mood you are in. 

It is amazing how some days you just wake up grumpy, then go the whole day without being able to shake it and not understanding why you had such a blah day! Simply checking in in the morning and acknowledging your mental state, good or bad, helps you to separate yourself from your mood. 

Ask yourself these questions and write these downs in your notebook: 

  • What are three things I am grateful for?
  • What are three things I love about myself?

Every day before my children leave for school I ask them the same questions, I usually only have them give me one thing for each, but it is such a good way to start the day and be in a positive frame of mind.

Hopefully, these tips help you with your personal goal planning this season! For more great tips, be sure to read this post on the 14 ways to enjoy the little things that make a happier home!

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  1. I’m going to acknowledge gratitude every day, but I never looked at myself. I will add this also, we need to live more intentionally rather than dart from one thing to another. I think slowing down will bring more joy to our lives.

    1. I couldn’t agree more with you,Diana. I also like to think back over the last 24 hours when I am thinking of things I am grateful for. Try and choose moments that have happened throughout that time that you are grateful for.