Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Goal Planning Made Easy

I am not a New Year's resolution person. I gave up on that long ago. However, as my friend, Crytal Paine pointed out on her blog this week, it is a fresh start to a new year. It's a great time to push the reset button, so to speak: to take a little time to think about where you've been, where you are, and where you are going.

I'm taking her up on her challenge to list my goals for 2009 and thought I'd share them with you:
  1. Spiritually> Daily Scripture memory centered on running the race set before me
  2. Emotionally> Do what I have to in order to avoid depression: exercise, less sugar, more sleep (including naps), more sunshine outdoors, pray more and faint less
  3. Physically> Eat less, move more, not less than 7 hours of sleep per night
  4. Marriage> Get off the computer and stay off the computer once Les gets home from work (hm - that's gonna be a hard one)
  5. Parenting> Pray for my children more concerning all the life changes they are going through; connect with each of them at least once a week about where they are and where they are going
  6. Leisure> Finish Lydia's gift scrapbook (I'm only a year and a half late! -- should have been her graduation gift -- *sigh*)
  7. Homekeeping> Go through the whole house to get ready to move (this is going to be! -- I'll let you join me, if you like; virtually, of course)
  8. Business> Begin selling my own products and totally revamp my website
  9. Ministry> Get into a more regular schedule for getting the Call to Worship messages posted to our church website
  10. Extended family> Make it a point to connect with my four sisters at least once a month either by email, phone, snail mail, or in person
So, you can see I have a lot to accomplish this year! And there are others which are connected with each of these.

Here is the process I take to get to my goals:

1. Take out eight sheets of blank paper (or however many I need to cover each thing I need to set goals for)
2. Head each one with these headings: spiritual, personal, wife, mother, teacher, homemaker, business, ministry
3. Create subheadings under the headings on each separate page:
  • Changes: things I need to improve in each category of my life
  • What to do: what I can do to change or improve these issues
  • How to do it: the procedure in steps how to change or improve these issues
  • What I need: what tools will I need to accomplish these tasks
By the time I fill in the headings and subheadings I have a clear set of goals, have thought through how to achieve them in an orderly fashion, and know what I need to gather to get the job done.

For instance, here is a sample under the Personal heading:

  • Lydia's scrapbook is not even started
  • The frames in the frame bin are in need of repair and to be used
  • My cross stitch project has not been completed
  • I need two new skirts sewn before spring
What to do:
  • Must carve out time in my schedule for these projects each week
  • Begin now with a new schedule for the year
How to do it:
  • Make a schedule and set aside time
  • Break each project down into small, attainable steps
  • Have goals and deadlines in place for each project
  • Gather materials for each project
  • Go through frames and discern whether or not each is worth the trouble of repairing and whether or not I will actually use them
  • Go through patterns and fabric already on hand to see if I can use it for skirts
What I need:
  • A schedule written out and ready to implement
  • Patterns, fabric, notions as needed and which I don't already have on hand
  • Get hardware and glue for mounting pictures and repairing frames
Give this a try some time, perhaps on a Sunday evening or fresh Monday morning before the family gets up or after everyone else goes to bed. You'll be surprised how much more focused you will be in your daily endeavors.

I'll be blogging about scheduling again real soon. So be sure to come back!