Happy New Year, friends! 2017 was an incredible year filled with amazing memories, but I can already tell that 2018 has so much in store (I kicked off the year by winning a game of Settlers of Catan, so you know that’s a good sign) and I’m excited to see it all play out.
Let’s be real – January 1 is just another day on the calendar. There’s nothing magical about the date, but with the start of a new year comes the perfect time to reflect on what went well during the previous year – and what could have gone better – and to set new goals for the upcoming year.
It’s tempting to skip right to setting new goals, but don’t skip over the reflection! Take a moment to write down your achievements and the things that didn’t go so well and why (hint, this is a great place to start when making your new goals). It’ll take a minute for everything from the past year to come back to you, so make a pot of coffee, get cozy and write down every little thing that comes to mind! The more you can list, the better, so just keep writing.
Here are a few things from my “What Went Well” list:
- Traveled a ton and saw some beautiful places
- Explored the Rocky Mountain National Park in every season
- Checked Thailand off my bucket list
- Started taking good care of my skin
- Pulled in the reigns financially, because the hubs and I have some big goals in 2018
- Started using my planner religiously
- Love my job
And a few of the things on my “Room For Improvement” list:
- Didn’t read as many books as I’d hoped
- Disorganized at home
- Struggled with sleep for the majority of the year
- Didn’t stick to a consistent workout schedule
- Didn’t prep meals very much, so I either ate out a lot or skipped lunch – yikes
Once you’re done with your lists, take a moment to pause and thank God for every opportunity, both the good and the bad, for your family; that He’d guide you through the upcoming year and “equip you with every good thing to carry out His will and strengthen you” (Hebrews 13:21).
Now for the New Year’s Resolutions! Open up to a blank page in your journal and jot down every single goal or intention that comes to mind, and don’t worry about being specific; we’ll get to that later. Keep your mind open and don’t limit yourself by trying to find the “perfect” goal – no matter how big or small, if it comes to mind, write it down!
After brain dumping your list of goals and resolutions, it’s time to make them more specific and measurable. Personally, I like to break my list into categories: health & wellness, faith, business, personal (obviously, feel free to make your own). Then, place each of your goals into these categories.
Finally, highlight 2-3 things from each category as your top priority goals, and make them as specific as possible – think S.M.A.R.T. goals here! So, “workout more” would change to something more like “workout 3 times per week for at least 1 hour” or “sign up for Tone It Up and participate in every challenge”.
So, to recap on how to set your goals for the New Year:
- Review your previous year and write down what went well and what could have gone better
- Take time to thank God for all He has given you
- Brain dump all your goals
- Separate your goals into categories and choose 2-3 from each category to focus on
- Make your goals Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-bound
Personally, I like having a planner that helps me stay on top of my goals, like Passion Planner! If you’re not ready to buy one, you can sign up for their email list to download the PDF’s and print your planner out at home.