The Secret To Setting Goals You'll Actually Achieve In 2018

There is something undeniably exciting about the clock turning 12 on January 1st.

Personally, I love the idea of new beginnings and the fresh start that comes with each New Year. While I set goals every month, I feel the most driven and inspired at the turn of the year. This year is no different and I’m taking time, after the excitement of the holiday season, to let the dust settle and map out my goals for the upcoming year. This year is going to be a bit different though. I’m using a different approach to setting goals, one that will actually allow me to achieve them.

Each year I attempt a 12-month planning session with long-term goals that are large, often generic, and fairly overwhelming. You know what follows, right? Yet another year of good intentions and nothing tangible to show for it.

While the last year has been filled with challenging and lucrative projects, I mostly worked on promoting others and didn’t adequately promote myself to new audiences, which is ironic and a real shame for my business.

That’s why I’m buckling down in 2018 and resolving to put myself out there.

My one and only long-term goal for this year is to be persistent and show up every day for myself and my business. That is the single goal I want to embrace this year. Everything I plan and do this year needs to be aligned with that core objective.

But here’s the thing... Persistence is the end goal I hope to achieve. While that’s all well and good, I need to know what I’m actually going to do to attain that goal. I have three actionable objectives that I’ve already planned out:

  1. I want to blog once a week because I have a lot to share and I have a lot to learn.

  2. I want to offer 1:1 online business coaching services to help those that need actionable brainstorm sessions but can’t afford an entire coaching program. The coaching sessions will provide the clarity and action steps required to take their business to the next level.

  3. I want to create an online course that addresses how to grow an online business to replace your 9 to 5 income.  This course would be an all inclusive course, so you don’t need to continue purchasing additional courses.

  4. I want to fill my Signature Group Coaching Program called Thrive Without The 9 to 5.  This group will be filled with those ambitious and go-getter type entrepreneurs that are ready to rapidly grow their online business and get RESULTS!

As you can see, these four actionable objectives require me to show up for myself every single day and demand persistence and tenacity. I’m here to commit to it and ask you to join me by sharing 1 to 3 goals you’re committing to this year.

As for my plan to achieve my four actionable objectives in pursuit of my primary goal?

Here’s the secret. I'm dropping all of the daunting 12-month grand schemes and I’m opting for a simpler and more intentional approach to fulfilling my goals throughout the year. I’m assigning each of the actionable objectives listed above to a specific quarter during the upcoming year.

So how does it work?

Simple - I’ll take each of my objectives and assign them in the following way:

  • 1st Quarter – DIY Course

  • 2nd Quarter – Signature Group Coaching Program

  • 3rd Quarter – Relaunch programs with tweaks

  • 4th Quarter - Relaunch programs with tweaks

I’ll begin by establishing a regular blogging schedule, promote and release my 1:1 Coaching Services, and work my way towards the Online Course Launch over the course of the year. At the beginning of each month, I’ll set small actionable tasks that need to be completed in order to keep me moving towards my objectives. At the end of each month, I’ll do a review to see how I’ve fared on the tasks I set for myself, carry forward any pending work, and set the tasks for the coming month. Leaving the Third and Fourth Quarters more open allows me to personally brainstorm and develop end of year initiatives.

How can YOU plan for success?

If you want to make 2018 the year where you finally stop thinking and actually start doing, then follow a process to set small and measurable goals and hold yourself accountable. Following this process is critical on days when you’re feeling overwhelmed or unsure of what needs to be done next.

To get started, follow these simple and effective steps:

  1. Describe your intention for the year in one word, a short phrase, or one sentence.

  2. Map out 3-4 objectives that will help you achieve your larger goal for 2018.

  3. Assign each of the objectives to a specific quarter of the year.

  4. Define monthly accomplishments to meet each of the quarterly objectives.

  5. Create up to 3 tasks for each week of the month to achieve the respective monthly accomplishment. You might have fewer than 3 tasks for some weeks, and that’s fine. Avoid the temptation to go beyond three. There’s only so much you can get done in a single week.

Start mapping your goals now.

At the beginning of each month, plan out the individual tasks for that month and assign them to a specific week so that you know what you need to be working on every step of the way. This may seem obvious, but we often stop our planning process at annual or quarterly goals. We need to remain aware of the work involved daily or weekly to achieve those goals.

To help hold yourself accountable, use your goals as your personal business manager. Conduct monthly reviews and create weekly task breakdowns to give yourself clarity on what you need to focus on each day. This will increase the likelihood of actually accomplishing your objective for the month and give you the satisfaction of knowing you actually finished what you set out to do.

In the event things didn’t work out as planned, the monthly review provides an opportunity to recalibrate your goals and redefine your tasks for the month to come. That’s why month end reviews are so important. It is a moment for you to reflect on the month that has passed, assess what worked, what could have been done better, and what still needs to be done in the month(s) to come. Schedule these reviews every month, block out time on your calendar, and make it a non-negotiable process in your business.

Working on your business through the use of intentional goal setting is a great way to keep sight of your larger goal, remain on task, and make the necessary headway to advance your business in the New Year.