I think we all have an inbuilt desire to be productive. We have goals and we hope to reach them as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, if you’re not born into a super rich family or you don’t have all the luck in the world, then you’ll probably have to work for your goals.
If you’re anything like me, then as soon as you’ve found a new goal or dream and you’ve settled on it, then you’ll want to get working on it right away. You’ll be making a list of everything that needs to get done. You’ll be thinking of ways to make it all perfect. Sound familiar? It probably does and that’s because we have all been there.
I think the problem is that we all want to be seen as ‘being productive’. We want to be known as the one who ‘get’s stuff done’. There’s a problem with this mindset though; When do we rest and reset if we are always being productive?!
There’s plenty of moments in your life where you are doing nothing. I like to call these ‘in-between’ moments. These are the moments when you are ‘in-between’ other things.
We can waste a lot of time with our in-between moments without even realising.
A little way that you can notice how many in-between moments that you have is by tracking the minutes of your day. When I do this, I notice that I take 30 minutes a day just dancing around the room to music, 2 hours scrolling through Twitter, and at least 5 minutes a day waiting for the kettle to boil.
Sometimes we have in-between moments when we are putting off doing something. I could happily reorganise my bookshelves or organise my wardrobe by colour just to avoid responding to emails or tidying.
In our mind, we probably still class this as being productive and in some ways it is. However, there’s other things that we should be doing instead and deep down, we know that.
Have you ever found a random list of goals that you set yourself years ago? If you’re anything like me, you probably set those goals and then forgot all about them. I know how disheartening that can be but now that you’re reading this, everything is going to change.
Don’t set ‘traditional’ goals
There’s a couple of reasons why traditional goals are actually holding you back. The first reason is that you aren’t actually creating goals, you’re creating dreams. We are always told to go big or go home so we do go big but by doing so, we are also making our goals impossible to achieve. These kind of goals also reply on other people. For example, maybe your goal is to reach a certain amount of followers on Instagram, well that would be a good goal if it didn’t rely on other people. It’s up to other accounts to follow you and therefore, your goal isn’t in your control.
Set process goals
To me, a process goal is something that you can actively control in your daily life. It doesn’t reply on anyone or anything else. For example, I could make a goal of how many views that I want to get a day on my blog but that it’s in my control. However, I could make a goal to upload a certain amount of posts per week. I can’t make people view my post but I can control what I put out into the world. It doesn’t matter that it’s a small goal, it matters that I’m following the process. If I made my goal that I wanted to reach 1,000 views a day, then I would probably end up feeling really bad about myself if I didn’t reach it. That is why you need to set goals on things that you can control.
Try making goals in three month incriments
There really is no need to set your goal timeframe for a whole year. So much can change and happen in that period that it’s hard to keep yourself feeling accountable. There’s also no time to put off the things that you need to do because you only have three months to reach your goals. After the three months is over, maybe you can extend your goal for another three months or you could adjust your goal completely. That is totally up to you but like I said, a year long goal is just way too long.
Tell your goals to anyone and everyone
I’m not sure why but people have become secretive about their goals. No one wants to share their goals list just on the off chance that they don’t reach their goal. We are all so afraid of failure and even more than that, we are afraid of other people seeing our failures. No one does everything by themselves and that is why you should share your goals. The people in your life will be the biggest motivators for you. Have people check in with you on your goals.
These tips are definitely working for me so I would love to know what helps you with setting goals that you can actually accomplish.