That one time I set a goal and it totally backfired

I’m kind of embarrassed to even write this. Okay totally embarrassed (but I’ll get over it). In January I set a goal of sending out a monthly newsletter. Something to keep myself accountable, share as I learn and interact with you guys who took the time to subscribe.  

But it’s October and this is only my second newsletter. What happened for 7 months, you may ask? Well I think that many times our goals backfire for some simple reasons: 

  • They are not SPECIFIC. You remember the  5 W’s right? Who, What, Where, When, Why. We need to have an understanding of these components as the foundation of our goals. 
  • They are not MEASURABLE. How do you know you’ve reached the goal? Is it a number on the scale? Is it a an email sent? We need to be able to know what a win looks like.
  • They are not ATTAINABLE or realistic for us. Yes, it’s good to dream big and reach for the stars. But if we set goals that we don’t even believe that we can achieve what’s the point? 
  • They are not TIMELY. We all love deadlines right? Goals have to have an expiration date. When will we get Goal X done? Next week? Next month? Put a finish line on it.

There may be many other reasons why we don’t follow through with our goals but what I know for sure is that when we don’t plan well, we often are planning to not be successful. Many times we have a goal but we don’t take the time to break it down to specific and actionable steps that we can hold ourselves accountable for. When we don’t take the time to plan we can get overwhelmed by what we think we need to do and also forget to see the progress we are making.  

I thought that after having a baby that I could get right back into the momentum I had before. Get back to a schedule that worked before. That was not realistic.  I needed to reprioritize what I needed to do and how I could do it. I needed to scratch the old schedule and work on a new schedule. I didn’t do that and that caused me to backfire on the goals I set at the start of the year.  

The good thing about goals though? They are ours! We own them. We can take inventory and modify as we need to. 

I’ll end with this. Don’t give up on yourself when you see that you haven’t done something you said you would do. Own it and then make a plan to do better by breaking down just one goal into specifics.