Monday, December 30, 2019

New Year, New Me!

Yes, yes. This is yet ANOTHER New Year post. So what's one more?

It's been while since I've brushed off the old "Create New Post" button. It's been so long that Blogger has completely updated their user interface for users (on this side of the screen; I don't think much changes on your end.)

The blog has been through yet another overhaul. I just couldn't seem to find the right color combo, but I think a simple green and white suits me just fine. (Odd since my favorite color is red. But I didn't think red translated so well in blog terms. I think simple is best).

I've spent all of Christmas break researching. Goal setting. Debt management. Diet. Exercise. Pretty much everything you research right before the new year.

Y'all..I know this blog is trite. There's not much I can do about that. I want to stay that I'm knock out these goals and that will be the end of it. But the truth is, I haven't been so great about goal setting when I've been in charge. I am convinced that I graduated college because everything was laid out for me. All I had to do was show up and do the work.

Which is the secret to all goal setting, right? Show up. Do the work. I haven't been showing up to my own life lately. And it shows. I'm a mess. An utter mess. Aren't we all on some level? The only solace I can give is this: you aren't alone. This is what my blog is all about - just trying to tackle life and sometimes getting it right. If I can share my experience and allow readers to learn from my mistakes, I'm willing to be vulnerable. Which is why I'm going to share my goals for 2020.

I'm going to lay out my goals and then I might take a post for each one to discuss how I plan on tackling them (tools, guidelines, etc). Then, you'll be able to come back and get updates on whichever goals interest you. I also am going to try to be a greater presence on YouTube and Instagram. If you don't already follow the accounts for This Side of Perfect, please consider following along.

My goals tackle four areas: Health, Money, Organization, and Life

Health: Lose 50 pounds by December 2020.
Money: Pay off credit cards by December 2020.
Money: Save $1,000 in savings
Organization: Create a morning and evening routine
Life: Complete a 50,000 word project by December 2020 (NaNoWriMo)

So why should you care about my goals? You shouldn't. They are mine. *Unless you're a friend or loved one who knows me personally or an empath, you probably don't care much about these goals.* BUT, my hope this year is that I can share what I'm doing to reach these goals and these tools will help you reach your goals. And I care about you reaching your goals (no, really, I do!)

As I said, I'll go into further detail about how I'm going to reach each of these goals (they will be one blog post each, I think so that they aren't too terribly long. People are busy. Y'all don't have time to read my drivel, after all.)

Let me finish this post, however, with a tool you need for setting goals. Every teacher on the planet is familiar this type of goal setting, as are millionaires and business people.

In order for your goals to be true goals (rather than just notes on a sheet of paper or hopes, wishes, and dream) there is a formula most successful people follow: the SMART formula. This idea isn't mine (and I'm not sure who created it) but it's tested and research based (teachers - see what I did there?)

A S.M.A.R.T goal is:

S - Specific - if you noticed, I didn't say I wanted to "lose weight" for my health goal. I was specific. I want to lose 50 pounds.
M - Measurable - how will I know that I've reached my goal? I lose 50 pounds
A - Attainable - it needs to be something that you can accomplish; I might want to own {insert Fortune 500 company} but considering I have zero marketing and business experience, the chance is slim.
R- Relevant - is it a goal that you set (verses one you think you should set or one everyone else is setting). For me to set a goal of running a marathon isn't relevant OR realistic. I don't like to run. I don't plan on running. I would never reach this goal because I'm not motivated to take step to make this goal a reality.
T - Timely - how long are you going to give yourself to achieve your goal? If you leave it open-ended, the chances are good that you will never reach it. Instead, give yourself a deadline. You'll thank your future self for it.

So, there you have it. Some examples of  non-S.M.A.R.T goals vs S.M.A.R.T goals :

non-S.M.A.R.T - Lose weight.
S.M.A.R.T - Lose 50 lbs by December 2020

non-S.M.A.R.T - Get out of debt.
S.M.A.R.T - Pay off 6 credit cards by December 2020.

non-S.M.A.R.T - Read more.
S.M.A.R.T - Read 2 books per month by December 2020.

Get the picture? Non-S.M.A.R.T goals, while complete sentences don't quite have the flavor that S.M.A.R.T goals do. They give you a little meat to sink into. They help guide you through your story.

In my next post, I'll break down each of my own goals and explain how I plan on achieving them, what tools I will, and how I'm going to track progress. I've never done this before. I'm the queen of setting goals, never to accomplish them. I'm taking my own advice here.

I hope you'll follow along this upcoming year and learn from my mistakes and (hopefully!) a few of my successes!

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