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:
- 10,000 steps a day
- Wake up at 6am everyday
- Quit my job
- Pay off the car
- Zero sugar for 12 months
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Quit my job – Heck yeah I did! (sorry I had to put this in again. Just a little bit proud of this one)
- 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.
- 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.
- 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 :
- Break down my goals and detail them out enough.
- Look at why I wanted to achieve those goals and what impact and meaning they would have on my life.
- Have the processes, systems and habits in place to achieve those goals.
- 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.