The goals that were

Yes, this is a post about goals. The ones I set at the beginning of 2019 but before I start writing this piece, let me just say I used to hate goal setting, in fact when I wrote these goals, I still hated goal setting. The only reason wrote them down was because at the time I was doing a business course, listening to a bunch of business/self-help podcasts and reading books like Think and Grow Rich (which I am yet to finish), and apparently goal setting is quite important to grow yourself, your wealth and success in life.

So I thought I’ve got this. I’m going to write down some goals!

I’ve never written down goals. Not ever. If I had the slightest inclination of wanting to achieve something, I just kept a mental note of it, which I would eventually forget. If I wrote them down then I was accountable and I didn’t want that. Accountability is also something else I hated. I promise I don’t hate everything

If you’re wondering how I approached this detailed, intricate goal setting, well I approached in a way that an artist would. With a piece of A3 paper and some coloured pens and pencils. This is what it wrote:

  1. 10,000 steps a day
  2. Wake up at 6am everyday
  3. Quit my job
  4. Pay off the car
  5. Zero sugar for 12 months
  6. Six Cotton series pieces

It took me all of 1 hour (remember I had to make it look all pretty) and then proud as punch I stuck it on my lounge room wall so I would see it every day as a constant reminder. As you can see above, it was incredibly detailed.

So how did I go? How many of those goals did I achieve?

Now that 2019 is over and we are into 2020, I can safely say that I achieved one of those goals. In May last year, I quit my job and moved on to better things. This was my biggest goal. I was hating my job and I put all my energy in the first half of 2019 towards finding new work.

As for the others, allow me to break it down for you.

  1. 10,000 steps a day – Firstly why 10,000? No reason really. I picked 10,000 as a completely arbitrary number. 8,000 was too easy, 12,000 was too hard. There is no science behind why someone should walk this number of steps a day, except that I have heard it thrown around a bit and I like nicely rounded figures. I didn’t achieve this goal every day, but it made me more active in winter as I am a self-confessed hibernating bear in winter normally and I now make the effort to go for a walk most days.
  2. Wake up at 6am every day – By the end of the year I was regularly waking up at 6:30am. This is pretty good in my books. Previously I was waking up all over shop. Sometimes at 7, 8, 8:30. Whenever really, my wake up times were dictated by night time feeds and work. It helped me get back into a routine after having given birth to Billie.
  3. Quit my job – Heck yeah I did! (sorry I had to put this in again. Just a little bit proud of this one)
  4. Pay off the car – This was a team goal. One for myself and Sam. We didn’t achieve it but we paid off almost $10,000! How awesome is that?! We are so close now that this goal will be smashed out of the ballpark in no time. It also allowed us to put a lot of our finances into perspective. It put us on the same page with what we want, financially, for our family.
  5. Zero sugar for 12 months – My most random goal. Just for the hell of it goal. I lasted 44 days until my daughter’s birthday, when it became a cake eating fest for 4 days. I may not have achieved this goal, but I learned a lot about my health and food in 2019. I also realized that I am addicted to sugar and something had to be done, just not in 2019.
  6. Six Cotton series art pieces – For those of you who don’t yet know it, I am an artist. I started the series in 2018 and wanted to draw six large hand drawn pieces last year. This was a ridiculous goal. I didn’t know how long these took except that they took a VERY long time. I actually wanted to draw 8, but Sam gave me that all-knowing-lets-be-realistic-here look and said, ‘When do you plan to do this?’ So, I stuck with 6. I didn’t do any. But this is not a fail! I instead worked on what I wanted as an artist and challenged myself by doing another piece that I am so darn proud off. You can check it out here.

I also forgot to mention one big thing that happened with my goals. I had a complete break down over them, hit burnout because I put so much pressure on myself to achieve them and had to deal with the mental sadness of not achieving them, that by the end of February, I had ripped up my beautifully drawn set of goals, collapsed in a heap with a big bowl of ice cream, a glass of wine (might have been a bottle…) and said ‘Whatever’ to goal setting. What a bloody waste of time.  Seriously, who comes with rubbish like this?

After quite a few months of learning to be kind to myself and taking a break from, well…myself. I realised; it wasn’t my goals that were the problem. In fact they were probably quite achievable goals. I just didn’t do a couple of fundamental things to achieve them.

I didn’t :

  1. Break down my goals and detail them out enough.
  2. Look at why I wanted to achieve those goals and what impact and meaning they would have on my life.
  3. Have the processes, systems and habits in place to achieve those goals.
  4. Make myself accountable or have anyone else keeping me accountable.

Honestly by the end of the year, it was by sheer luck that I had achieved any of them at all, except for quitting my job. That one I wanted, knew exactly why and how I was going to get it done.

And there you have it. The goals that were part of my 2019.

If you’re wondering whether I set any for 2020, I sure did! Are they big? No, I don’t think so. I made sure I looked at all the things I missed when I had goal set for 2019. They are not perfect, but I’ve realised that goals are never ending. The best ones, I believe, allows us to continually grow and become better versions of ourselves, as cliché as that sounds. I’ll lay them all out for you in my next post.