Monday, September 26, 2011
Map Your Month Monday
It’s the last week of September already. Wow, time has flown, hasn’t it? Looking back over September, have you reached any goals that you set at the beginning of the month? Did you even think about goals? Well, if you haven’t/didn’t/never even had a minute to think about it, don’t sweat it. That’s one of the nice things about the end of a month – a new start is just around the corner!
You probably wouldn’t take a month-long trip without lots of planning, maps and directions, right? So why go into a new month of your life without making some plans and setting a few goals – having a plan makes sense, doesn’t it? You have five days to think about a few goals before October 1st. You want your goals to be S.M.A.R.T., which stands for: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely. For example, if I had a goal of saving money next month, that’s not really specific, so I have no way to measure my success come November 1st. However, if I say I’d like to save $100, here’s how I would do it.
S – specific – yes, $100 is a very specific amount
M – measurable – yes, I can see all month long how I’m doing
A –Achievable – hmm… can I save $100? That would be about $25/week, or $3.22/a day. Okay, if I brought my lunch a few days a week, didn’t go to Starbucks and made my coffee at home, pick up a lot of pennies, and made a few minor changes, I could probably save that much a day without feeling a crazy amount of sacrifice.
R – Realistic – Yes, I think saving $3.22 a day could be reasonable for me to do. Okay, maybe I have to do some couch-cushion hunting here and there, and shake out the bottom of the old pocketbook, but it is do-able.
T – Timely (or tangible). Yes, I can fit it in a timeframe, with a specific beginning and end.
Now that you have the goal-setting tools to use, how about gently stepping out there, taking a deep breath and make one target October goal for the following areas:
1) Physical goal (example: I’d like to lose five pounds)
2) Financial goal (example: I’d like to save $X amount)
3) Personal goal (example: I’d like to read that book)
4) Career goal (example: I want to get info on a seminar or college course that will help me in my career, or I want to leave 15 minutes earlier each day)
5) Relationship goal (I want to have a date night with my man this month, or spend some one-on-one time with a child or friend this month)
6) Spiritual goal: (example: I want to read one Proverb a day, or read the book of Galatians, or memorize four Scripture verses, or pray daily)
7) Dream goal: (I always wanted to visit the Grand Canyon. So this month I’m going to get information on traveling there – maybe visit a travel website, find out how much it would cost, get some brochures, etc.)
That gives you one goal a day to work on. They’re not big bahonkin’ crazy I’ll never reach them goals. They are baby steps, I can do this goals. Grab your calendar, make a note, break each one down into bite-size once a week bits, and mark a big red “GO FOR IT” on October 1st!!!
Share your comments here on what you goals will be – and email me if you have any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m off to get an empty glass jar so I can drop $3.22 in it each day in October and watch my goal grow!