How do you choose the goals that you set every year?
Often, the goals we set in January have very little to do with the long term outlook of our lives. We look at the year ahead and think about losing weight or getting a promotion, but often don’t think about the impact that this year could make on the next 10 years.
If you aren’t focusing on the big picture, then you aren’t setting the right goals.
Devoting a year of your life to achieving something should really be meaningful. It should be moving you forward in a direction that you want to go. It should be getting you closer to the person you want to be, the things you want to have, or the life you want to live.
Accomplishing any goal is a success. And not every goal needs to be life-changing. But what if you could set goals this year that would truly push you forward in your life?
This is part 2 of our yearly planning series (get part 1 + the free worksheet here), and we have another free worksheet for you to use to start thinking about the big picture of your life, so that you can set really concrete, life-enhancing goals in 2019.
Here is your free worksheet: Thinking Big. Read on for a quick guide to filling it out and finding your future.
Think about your relationships
In life, it is other people who will end up being most important.
Other people are critical to your success — every opportunity that you get will come from another person in one way or another. And then of course there are your personal relationships, like friends, family, significant others, etc.
So as you begin to think about the big picture of your life, start by thinking about people.
On your worksheet, you’ll list out the people that matter most to you. It will probably be easy to fill out the first few lines. But what about the rest? Who are the other important players in your everyday life?
It might be people that you don’t think of right away. For example, your manager might be a really important person who you wouldn’t think of because they aren’t a close friend or family member. But if you interact with them every day, or if you admire them, or if you see them as someone who can help you achieve your goals, then they are actually a really important person in your life.
Once you have identified who is important in your life, it is time to think about your relationship with that person. How do you think that *they* think about you? What do they think about their relationship with you?
How can you improve your relationships?
Once you have taken stock of your important relationships today, start thinking about how you can improve them in the future.
How do you want to be remembered?
What do you want your legacy to be?
Think about all the people who are important to you. How do you want them to feel about you? What do you want them to think of when they think about you?
This will all be determined by the things you do in your life. You can’t be known for something without doing it. For example, if you want your peers at work to think of you as someone smart who is a leader, you have to do more than just show up for work and do what is asked. Think about how you can level up. Maybe you could set a goal to go to one professional conference this year and present about it to your team; or set a goal to take lead on a project. (In next week’s planning worksheet, we’ll help you think about the steps you’d need to do those things!)
Prioritize the bigger picture and the lasting impact you want to have on people.
Why is this important for your 2019 goals?
When you know what is truly important to you, you will set goals that align with that big picture vision. And what is truly important starts with people.
When you can look at your life backwards — starting with where you want to end up — you can make smarter choices today about how to get there. Once you know the big picture, you can start to make really strategic, smart choices about the goals you set for 2019.
And that is where we will start next week in Part 3. See you there!