The New Year has begun! Do you have some goals you want to work on this year?
Today I want to share something that has helped me so much to get a jump-start on my goals and begin to make progress.
It’s easy at the beginning of the year to make our list of goals. But most of us find ourselves well into the new year and have not even started on any of them! I think sometimes that is because we kind of forget about our goals and life happens.
I have found one way to give me the boost and reminder I need to work away at these goals one week at a time — using my calendar!
How to Use Your Calendar to Jump-Start Your Goals
- Make a list of goals for the new year.
- Take that list and break it down into some baby steps. Write these steps down.
- Choose a calendar to use (if you don’t have one already) — I like to use Google Calendar and my Intentional Planner.
- Take out your calendar (either digital or physical) and add all your baby steps to your calendar.
- Properly use your calendar during the week to remind yourself of what needs to be done and then do it!
Goal: Read 24 books this year.
Baby Steps: Make a list of books to read and the number of chapters in each. Divide up the books choosing 2 for each month and write that down. Then look at the number of chapters for those two books and figure out how many chapters you need to read each week to finish the 2 books each month. Write those figures down. Now add reminders to your calendar that you need to read “X” number of chapters that week. This will help keep you on track to complete the books before the end of the month.
Goal: Send more handwritten notes to family and friends.
Baby Steps: Make a list of people that you want to send cards/notes to. Divide it up between the months of the year and then enter each on your calendar (Ex. “Send card to Evy today”). I know that I have so many good intentions and really do want to encourage others through cards, but never seem to get around to it or remember to do it. Simply adding this item to your calendar will give me the reminder I need! If you don’t want to make a list of people ahead of time, simply add “Send hand-written note to someone this week” to your calendar (or if using digital set it up on recurring) each month or however often you want to send out notes. Sometimes I like to just seek the Lord about someone that needs some encouragement and send a note to that person.
Goal: Purchase Christmas gifts throughout the year.
Baby Steps: Make a list of those that you will need to buy gifts for. Now add to your calendar a reminder to “Purchase a Christmas gift this week”. You will have to figure out how often to add the reminder, depending on how many people you have to buy gifts for. I set up a reminder in Google Calendar once a month to add this to my shopping list. Once the gift is purchased, write what you bought on your Christmas gift list, then place in a tub that is designated to hold the Christmas gifts you buy throughout the year. By the time December rolls around, I will have a huge chunk of my shopping done!
Goal: Exercise more
Baby Steps: Decide on what kind of exercise you will do. I like to do 15-minute workouts several days a week. But you will have to decide what kind of exercise you like to do, how long it takes, and what equipment you will need. Once that is decided, then set up a schedule for yourself. I have designated Monday, Wednesday, and Friday as my days to exercise. Add “Exercise” to your calendar on the days you want to exercise. This will be a reminder and will hopefully keep you accountable to do it!
These are just a few examples, but I hope you see how this can really help you get going with your goals.
When we sit there looking at our list of goals, it is easy to get overwhelmed and not know where to start. By breaking down these goals into baby steps, then getting them on our calendar, not only are we setting up a “plan” for ourselves, but we relieve so much stress by getting all that “stuff” out of our brain.
How about you? Will you start right now getting those “baby steps” onto your calendar and getting things done?