New Year’s Goals (Resolutions!)

Those New Year’s Goals…

new-years-resolutions-what-brass-players-wantIf I am totally honest, last year’s New Year’s resolutions seem like a thing of the past.  I have of course looked at them regularly and have tried to refocus myself on them but this has not always been the most effective.

Initially I set some good goals and they were clear, measurable, seemingly achievable and set within a time frame.  But life, well it kind of gets in the way doesn’t it?

This year’s resolutions are shaped around a number of different projects that are musical as well as teacher related and I have gone for an approach that was shared by Ellen Finkelstein.  By using long term plans for the year 2014 which are broken down into monthly objectives, then weekly and finally daily it has been possible to really focus on what I am going to achieve and when I will achieve it by.

The problem of words

There seems to be a consensus at the moment that links the problem of New Year’s Resolutions to the wording that is used.  Many of us will have set ourselves New Year’s Resolutions with excitement and drive, only to find that this has waned very quickly as the year has progressed.  This may well lead to having some fairly negative associations with the prospect of resolving  to complete another set of ideals.  By replacing this with the word goal instead of resolution it can give a completely different focus to the things that we really want to achieve.

So, what is the system that I have used and how can you apply this to what you want to achieve.  This is all fairly simple and fits under a few brief headings:

Main Goals for 2014 – What are your top 5 goals for the year?

1)    Goal 1: _________________________

2)    Goal 2: _________________________

3)    Goal 3: _________________________

4)    Goal 4: _________________________

5)    Goal 5: _________________________

Please click here to download your pdf New Year’s Goal 2014 template.  Make sure that you print this out or put it somewhere you will see it on a regular basis to help remind you of what you are heading towards.

In this list include only vague goals and dreams that you would like to have achieved by the end of the year.  Although you should be realistic, remember that what you think upon grows and if your targets are not aspirational then you will quickly lose interest.

Next come up with your top 5 targets for each month.  Try to make these very specific.  Create SMART targets that are clearly linked to your yearly goals, leading you toward achieving them.  Some of the targets may well need repeating in consequent months – planning ahead will help to identify these areas.  Although this may take a little while to do it, it’s worth pursuing as it will enable you to avoid unnecessary procrastination or deliberation as you go along.

Breakdown those goals!

new-years-resolutions-what-brass-players-wantWhen you have your top 5 targets for each month, break these down into 7 targets per week and aim to complete one or more of these every day.  Make your daily targets really clear and concise with specific outcomes.  Aim to ensure that your daily targets allow you to achieve small steps that lead you toward yearly aims or dreams.  To help get you started, simply click here to download your Goals breakdown 2014 template.

This way of goal setting will allow you to set overall dreams and goals that you have and frame them in a way that make them achievable.  Your goals will become something that become part of your life and will make you focus on the things that you want.  The main issues I have faced with achieving my goals are down to procrastination or lack of focus.  Setting up goals and targets in advance will allow a real focus and avoid the problems of procrastination of how to achieve the main goals I have had.

Even though my target setting last year has helped me to achieve more than I usually would, this method of planning out ideas will provide a way of really focusing thoughts and ideas over a longer period of time.

What are your thoughts about this method of planning?  Initially it may seem like a lot of work and effort, but with some thought it may well prove to be very useful.  Do you think that it may be worth the additional effort or attention and do you feel that it will help you toward making 2014 your best ever year?  Let me know if you have found the templates useful or if you have any ideas for alterations or adaptations.

Please do comment or contact me through the comments box below.

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