I often do a new years resolutions blog. They are depressingly similar. Year in, year out, – do more of this, do less of that. I make some progress in one or two of them each year, and no doubt fall back in other areas too. Round and round.
However, it is a good exercise in reflection. Over on Archie and the Rug, Nicolette phrases it slightly differently, and challenges us to set ourselves six “Goals” for the year ahead. I like this. It also gets me thinking about how we set objectives at work – (or at least are supposed to) – and how perhaps if I used that approach in new years resolutions / goal setting, it might make it more likely that I would achieve some of them.
For those who are blissfully unaware of the management-speak burble which is the “SMART” objective, let me explain.
S – Specific
M – Measurable
A – Acheivable
R – Realistic
T – Time related
Or something like that.
So, you don’t say “keep up with the garden”, instead it’s
To maintain a well kept garden by: mowing the lawn fortnightly (on a saturday), checking for, and removing weeds weekly (on a sunday), pruning roses in autumn, sewing seedlings, watering and planting out as required according to season. Watering and feeding plants as required.
And you’d have a measure of success – lawn is neatly trimmed, flower beds well stocked and free of weeds, plants thriving and free of disease.
So – there are specific things you are telling yourself to do, times you are meant to do them, it should be acheivable & realistic (as long as you give yourself the time to do them) – and you will know how to measure whether you have acheived them because you will know – I’ve only mowed the lawn twice this year so the lawn is four foot high, I didn’t water the plants so they all died.
With that in mind – what are my goals for 2013?
1. Get Married!
More specifically, get married and have a wedding ceremony and reception which go as smoothly as can be expected when families and friends who are as diverse a bunch of fruit and veg as you could imagine come together in one shopping trolley.
This one probably needs a whole entry of its own to make it SMART. But, certain things are specific already. Get married. Time related. Technically 23rd May for the marriage, but the ceremony / event all has to be sorted out before so it can happen on 25th. Acheivable? Ask me in May :-\ Measurable? Well hopefully I will be able to ask myself in June – Are you married? The answer will be a measure of success!
2. Be more creative by:
- Painting at least six pieces this year – three by June, the remainder by the end of the year.
- Completing craft / DIY tasks for the wedding (bouquets, buttonholes, invites, decorations.)
- Take a walk in a new direction every month for inspiration
- Write more poetry – to capture moments in words as well as photographing them. (at least once a week)
3. Take care of myself by:
- Walk at least four times a week – for at least 1 hour.
- Put in practice the lessons learnt from counselling sessions
- Practice mindfulness every day.
- Be honest about my needs and expectations
- Have two “treat” days a month – the rest of the time to be mainly veggie, not drinking, and healthy eating.
4. Develop Rose Tinted Ribbons.
This one is mainly for the latter half of the year, after the wedding – as I won’t have much time or money to invest before. But, by the end of the year I would like to
- Have enough stock to go to a wedding fair / market
- Have examples of each type of product so far considered
- Experiment with a new product idea each month
- Blog twice a week
- Have a marketing plan for the year ahead.
5. Reduce debt.
Again – another one for more attention later in the year really as the old wedding isn’t totally pocket friendly. But I really want to make a concerted effort to reduce my debt. This will be helped by drinking less, and all the craft I have to do keeping me busy. However – some specifics:
- Make a fresh debt reduction plan in June, after the wedding – to establish exactly where I am, and consider what can be achieved.
- Take lunch to work
- Plan – before pay day, sit down and plan meals, treat nights, activities and budget for the month ahead.
- Review utility providers
- Switch to 0% card if offer comes up (if can)
- Be less in debt at the end of the year than at the begining
6. Finish novel
I have about four “in progress” novels, but one main one I’m about 85,000 words in which I started in Nanowrimo two years ago – which I have a plot outline and lots of ideas for, so I want to get this to some form of completion. I write quickly when I get into it, so it’s not really an unacheivable goal if I set my mind to it, even with everything else going on.
- Write for (at least) one hour a day – either on train, or at lunch
- Use Nanowrimo to write more
- Have first draft finished by end of year.
There. Going to be busy eh? And that’s without the mayhem at work. Oh well, my hair is going to go white sooner or later anyway!
What are your New Year’s goals? How are you going to make them happen?