My youngest sister Jennifer recently asked me to sit down with her and to create individual goals for 2015. In the back of my head, I was thinking “Seriously, I’m supposed to be doing more? Can I just have a few weeks to catch my breath before going into 2015 with another to-do list?” “We need to reach our greatest potential, and we have lots to still accomplish,” said Jennifer.
My sister Jennifer is not someone you ever want to compete against. You want to get yourself on her same team. She has motivation, drive, and discipline that I see in few people. She was successful in college both as an athlete and student. She saved while going to college and upon graduation paid cash for her first car. Who has money to save while in college and can pay cash for a new car? Jennifer knew the position and employer she wanted to work for upon college graduation. She practiced interview questions and answers for hundreds of hours and beat out hundreds of qualified applicants with years of experience. After several promotions, she has recently celebrated 10 years with that same employer.
After hearing Jennifer’s initial goal question, we proceeded to come up with seven categories to help us focus our goals—financial, work, mind, physical, spiritual, adventure, and relationships. We then proceeded to create S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based) goals within these categories. Since January 1, Jennifer has been texting, calling, and emailing holding me accountable to the commitments that I made to myself and to her. Yikes!
After some reflective thinking over the last few days, the most compelling reason for me to stay committed to my goals throughout 2015 is not my sister Jennifer but to live my life with purpose, focused on people, and to make a difference.
More often than not, our goals become shadows drifting off as we lose focus trying to manage our day-to-day responsibilities, or we allow ourselves to get sucked into spending too much time in areas that really don’t matter. For each of us those timewasters can be different but can include social media, television, oversleeping, gaming, etc. Let’s work to minimize the excuses, stop limiting ourselves in our thinking, and stop apologizing for what didn’t happen.
Let’s work to prepare the environments that surround us to be supportive in helping us reach our goals. Let’s move forward and make 2015 our best year yet.
How much time have you recently dedicated to planning your life? What’s your plan for the next six months, the next year? As a new chapter in your life unfolds in 2015, what will be your beginning, the in between, and the end?
Decide today to make conscious decisions for how you will spend your time and who you will spend it with. Get rid of the excuses and avoid regrets. When we take the time to think about our life and plan ahead, we know what it is that we need to do.
Let go of previous failed goals. Focus on achieving future goals. Celebrate past successes! As my sister Jennifer said, “We need to reach our greatest potential, and we have lots to still accomplish.”
Successful individuals and businesses set short- and long-term goals regularly. They create a plan with action items and teams to help accomplish those goals. What do you hope to accomplish in 2015? What do you hope to accomplish during your life? What is your plan?
My sisters and I encourage you to make 2015 the best year yet! Happy New Year!