Plan Your Goals In One Sheet

My birthday is in early September. As with most people, I use my birthday as a time to assess goals – what has been going well and what hasn’t. It acts as a soft launch for my “resolutions.” So, by the time the actual New Year is upon me, I’ve already made some adjustments and am well on my way.

I’ve always been a list maker and a note taker. But I realized that I was rarely executing and my lists were never getting any shorter.

In the beginning of 2017, I made this complicated excel sheet I thought would help, but by summer, it proved too cumbersome. So, I set about the task of simplifying my productivity. After getting Side Hustle Pro’s Goal Getter Action Plan, I created a one page goal sheet, which naturally incorporates the SMART (Specific, measurable, attainable, Relevant, Time Sensitive) goal framework. It helped me prioritize, stay focused and produce content consistently, including a weekly newsletter and blog post. These are the 5 things I include on my one page goal sheet:

1. Purpose

WHY are you doing this at all. Your “why” is the motivation to get it done – the grand scheme of things.

2. Theme

I set a theme for the month so I’m not flying by the seat of my pants all month. I like a one or two word theme to keep my thought process tight. When selecting a theme, I go back to the questions I’ve been asked over the previous month. I also take a look at my analytics to find who is engaging and build content to keep that audience interested.

3. Goals

Everyone knows what a goal is. In this section I quantify what I want to do. So “blog more,” is not sufficient. I say “write 4 blog posts.” I’m real with myself about what I can accomplish. Setting realistic goals helps me keep my feet to the fire. I usually have 2-3 goals I focus on each month.

4. Action Plan

This is where I list out the exact things I will do. For content creation purposes, I will list out the titles for the blogs I want to write around the theme.

5. To Do List

What is required to get the action plan done and when am I going to do it. I get pretty specific. I write down the steps, especially the things I tend to forget, with a day in parenthesis. For instance, For the visual promotion, I write things like “buy flowers (sat) create graphics (sun), share to pinterest (wed), share to instagram (mon), etc,” then I repeat the steps each week.

BONUS – Future Considerations: I always leave space on my sheet to jot down ideas for the next month. I am an incredibly forgetful person. If I don’t write things down, I WILL forget. I also get the best ideas while I’m creating content. So instead of writing it down on a miscellaneous sheet of paper, that I’ll never be able to find, I jot it on my goal sheet. The bonus, of course, is all those stray thoughts I’ve jotted throughout the month are a great jumping off point for the next month’s goals.

 

Here are a couple other examples for how I would break down the most common “resolutions”:

RESOLUTION: LOSE WEIGHT

Purpose: Get healthy

Theme: Eat more veggies

Goal: 1 meat free meal each week

Action Plan: 4 healthy meat free recipes

To Do List: grocery list (sat), meal prep (sun)

Future Considerations: that yummy chicken recipe you found on pinterest while looking for meat-free foods

RESOLUTION: START A BUSINESS

Purpose: Make Money from Ideas

Theme: Research

Goal: Read 3 marketing books

Action Plan: name the books

To Do List: Read for 1 hour a day from 6-7

Future considerations: The other interesting, non-marketing books you found

While I still have lists all over the place, my one page list has helped me hone in on the most important tasks to complete every month.

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