With the new year comes a fresh wave of optimism and ambition, leading us to set a series of goals for our personal and professional lives. Sometimes we aim too high, and are burnt out before February comes around. Other times, we do not invest enough time or energy into actually achieving our goals so they never truly get off the ground. Setting successful goals is a delicate balance; you should aim high enough that you will sufficiently push yourself to your highest potential, but you do not want to be unrealistic and end up discouraged. Here are the steps we have realized through our own goal setting – both personal and professional – that you should consider during the #NewYearNewMe period.

THINK BACK, THEN THINK AGAIN

We are planners by nature, so we are prone to (over)thinking when it comes to setting goals. What we have found successful is to look at our past history, whether as a business or an individual and create a baseline standard for our performance. Basically, ask yourself what is the minimum amount I should be doing so I still improve at least some this year? From there, look ahead into the next year. What obstacles do you foresee blocking your goals? How do your personal goals align with your professional goals, and vice versa? When setting goals, you should not only consider where you have been (and then strive for growth), but truly consider what lies ahead and how your goals fit into your larger picture.

SET AND DO NOT FORGET

It is so easy to write a long list of goals and then tuck them away, never to be thought of again. If you are not constantly reminding yourself a) that you even have these goals, and b) why you want to achieve them, chances are you will not reach them. Once you set a goal, set an appropriate reminder – whether that is a weekly calendar notification, a post-it note on your mirror, or an accountability partner to check in with you along the way. It is so easy to get caught up in the day-to-day tasks of work and life that we often forget how our everyday actions contribute to our larger goals. Remind and encourage yourself every chance you get to keep pushing toward your goals.

EVERYDAY BE HUSTLIN’

Whether you are setting goals on a company or personal level, even the most thought out goals can fail (we have definitely had our fair share!). If you find yourself on track to miss a goal, stop and ask yourself why. Think about the internal and external factors that could have caused the missteps. Recognize what was out of your control, but take ownership for where you went wrong. Take the time to make adjustments to your goal or your execution strategy, and get back to work. Everyone makes mistakes, but how you recover from them will set the stage for all of your future successes to come.

What are your goals for 2019, and how do you plan to achieve them?

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