Now that the New Year is here, it’s time to put your goals into action! In our previous post, we talked about how to plan for new goals and resolutions – but now it is time to start working towards your goal. Planning is important, but putting your plans into action is another challenge. Follow these steps to make sure you stay on track and maintain your goals throughout the year:
Set manageable goals
As we mentioned in our post on planning for New Year resolutions, one of the most important parts of setting a goal is to make sure it is manageable. Goals are supposed to be set benchmarks or targets that you want to reach by the end of the year or a certain period of time. In order for them to be successful, make sure that your goals are actually achievable, and something that you can work towards and stay focused on. You shouldn’t have to be changing or adapting your goals because you don’t have the time or energy to work on them. When you set your goal, make sure you have the resources, means and motivation to achieve your goal. You need to make sure you have time to work towards it, and support from friends and family to see it through.
For example, if your goal is to get organized, make sure you are able to set aside time each day or week to work on a section of your home. Do you have a full-time job or activity that will prevent you from working towards your goal? Is it a goal that you can accomplish in one year, or should you dedicate more time to it?
Have realistic expectations
When setting a goal, know that it is something you are not going to achieve overnight, or probably even at the end of the month. Goals are usually set for a year, or even longer, for a reason. They take time and dedication to see them through. Prepare yourself for a long road ahead and be realistic about how long and how challenging it may be to accomplish. Don’t expect to see a noticeable change or result at the end of the first week. Visible changes will take time, so remind yourself throughout the process that results will happen if you keep working and stay focused. Goals are not tasks that you can accomplish right away, but rather year-long or more commitments that you will need to spend time on in order to see results.
If your goal is to get organized, it’s important to realize that it won’t take a few quick steps to accomplish. Getting organized and maintaining your organized home or life requires time and effort. For example, it’s almost impossible to tackle your entire home right away. Instead, start with small, simple tasks (like the junk drawer or kitchen pantry) and work up to larger projects. By being realistic about the process of getting organized, you will be more successful in achieving your goal.
Make goals attainable
It’s important to be practical about the timeline of your goal. Don’t underestimate how long it will take you to see noticeable changes. It is unreasonable to think that you will have your whole house organized by the end of the first month. Not only is it a lot of work to complete, but problems or life events may come up during the process which can delay your timeline. Make sure your goal is attainable – give yourself enough time, or more time than you would expect. This way, you will have a better chance of achieving your goal and prevent yourself from becoming discouraged or stressed out when your planned timeline comes quicker than expected.
It may also be helpful to work with a friend or family member to achieve your goal. Trying to complete it on your own may not be practical for you, so consider finding another person to work on this goal with you. Setting a goal as a team works great for home organizing. Not only will this help you attain your goal, but it will ensure that everyone in your home continues to maintain your organized state beyond your anticipated completion date.
Remember: small, consistent changes create big everlasting results
When you are working towards your goal, stay focused and know that each milestone you hit and each small change or task you accomplish helps you work towards your final goal. Producing small results on a continual basis can help you stay on track without overwhelming you during the process. For example, during the month of January, Calm Order is posting small organization tasks you can accomplish each day to help you get your home organized. Although one month doesn’t cover every small task that needs to be completed, the idea of organizing one small section or area at a time will eventually lead to a home that is completely organized. Take the idea of doing one small task each day and continue it throughout the year or time period you have set for yourself.
When you set a goal for this year, make sure that it is manageable and attainable. Be realistic about your progress and what you will be able to achieve in the time you have set for yourself, and remember that small accomplishments will lead to big and lasting change when your goal is finally realized.