Goal Setting 101- How do you do it?

Goal setting. Do the words send shivers down your spine, or do they make you want to dig out your day planner and your prettiest pen, and dig in?

I’ve studied goal setting under the Franklin Planner people; I’ve been a devotee for over twenty years of their system. I’ve learned goal setting (and mission planning) from Bob Mayer. I’ve done a five main goals for five years, completely under Debbie Macomber’s spell, during an RWA National Conference Keynote Luncheon.

And yet, I’m still figuring out how goal setting and I get along.  I know that a big mission is propped up with smaller tasks that must get done in order for the big mission to be successful. In other words, “life chunks” – those big rock goals – should be put into your life bucket first, so the smaller goals – those pebbles, the sand – can fit into and around the bigger goals. And your bucket still has room for water (lesser goals).

But I’m looking for more. I’m looking for your opinions. How do you set goals? How often do you review them? Do you have daily, weekly, monthly goals? A one year plan, five year plan, ten years? Career goals, personal goals, fitness goals? Do you separate out your goals (financial, fitness, career, house), or are they all a part of a master plan?

I’d love to know. Please leave a comment and tell me how you work your goals list. The comments will be open all week – and at the end of the week I’ll pick one lucky commenter to receive a $10 Amazon card as a thank you!

~ Until the next time, cheers – and remember to drink responsibly! ~

Demon Soul, Blood Dreams and Demon Hunt are all available for the Kindle! Have you fallen into the Caine Brothers’ world yet?

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14 Responses to Goal Setting 101- How do you do it?

  1. PJ Sharon says:

    Great question, Christine. I love goal setting! In my world, goals are flexible, measurable, and are like a personal assistant to keep me on track. Starting with the macrocosm, I do have broad, three, five, and ten year goals–a general vision of where I see myself heading over time. That said, God always seems to have bigger plans for me than I have for myself, LOL. On a smaller scale, I set yearly goals in Jan. And check in quarterly to see how I’m doing and if they need adjusting. I have a calendar with monthly and weekly tasks to keep me on point, but the real work is in the daily and weekly to do list that moves me forward step by step. The actual goals for my writing life require much more attention and micromanagement than my general life goals which are a part of everyday life for me. Things like working out, making time for fun, and trying to stay balanced are always in my head. I think folks who have trouble with setting goals have a hard time figuring out exactly what they want. If you know that, getting there is just one goal after the other.

  2. Robena Grant says:

    I have a goals document that I keep going for five years. In January me and my critique partner set our yearly goals and we exchange those. Every month I set monthly goals at the beginning of the month, and try to break it down to weekly goals. This way I can review what I’ve achieved, where I’m falling short, where I submitted, what the results where. When I achieve anything it’s usually written in red in all caps and with multiple exclamation points. : )
    I’m also a member of Jenny Crusie’s Forums and we have a category titled monthly goals and submissions. We post there and do the rah rah, or commiserate on rejections, etc.
    In my opinion, I think it doesn’t matter where you record goals it just matters that you have a plan.

  3. katemckinley says:

    Great post, Christine! Goal setting definitely sends shivers down my spine! lol

  4. Maria Powers says:

    You are going to have to share your methods with me. I don’t seem to have any goals – only I do, but they are on vision boards. For whatever reason that works better for me. This reminds me that it is time for a new one.

    I just don’t work well with linear goals. Visual stimulation works better for me.

  5. Sam Beck says:

    Christine, you’re already far more advanced in goal setting than I. I’m in the half tangible effort/half mystical karma camp. Every year I write my big, over-arching goals down, hang them on the back of the closet door, and then rely on the magical power of the universe to somehow make them happen. Or maybe seeing them every time I open the closet subsconsciously helps me focus … I really don’t know. 🙂

  6. Goal setting, what a great post! I am just now considering making goals every first of the month. I write a daily list (that often turns out to be a weekly list of goals LOL) and of course the New Year is a great time to goal set, but I’m thinking once a month. I’ll let you know how it goes.

  7. Laurie Cunningham says:

    I only make lists because I can’t remember more than 2 things at a time anymore. I don’t know that I’ve ever set goals, so I guess I fit into the “shiver” category! I work on the forest fire principle – whichever fire is biggest gets worked on first. It seems to work for me, but it isn’t without it’s anxiety-producing moments! For instance: I have a class that I’m teaching on Saturday (Spinning appropriately for the sheep breed). I have a number of different kinds of sheep rovings to choose from, and I’ll need to weigh out about an ounce per person (roughly 10) for the class. I also need to put together an outline of what/how I’m going to present the information. I will be doing this Thursday evening and Friday. I work very well with a deadline. It helps that I know the subject very well…

    I think I’ve always admired people who set goals, but it seems that I’m more comfortable existing in the moment.

  8. Joanie says:

    Good post. Ever since I started my freelance writing business I’ve set one-, three-, and five-year business goals. In my one-year plan I also do mid-year reviews to make sure I’m still on-track, and the longer term goals get updated as life flexes to make for new opportunities and challenges. Because most of my pay comes from nonfiction, I also put money goals in place. I’ve found if I consistently budget future sales at at least 25% more than I “think” at first I can make (and what I need currently to make bills), I consistently reach that higher goal. I’ve only missed a couple of years, and even then I made at least half of the bonus percentage I was shooting toward. I think anytime you quantify goals, put a “true value” on your product, you’re much more likely to reach the goal. Brownie points are nice, but extra zeros on the paycheck are even better.

    Joanie

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