8.04.2012

On Goals // Giving Up on My 20 Before 24

You may remember a long, long time ago when I posted my 20 before 24 goals.  Well I am here to tell you that I didn't meet them.  If you already knew that, then I can't get anything past you.  

A while ago I just plain took the link off the blog, didn't talk about the goals, & went on with life.  I was embarrassed that I made such a stink about goals & how I was going to complete them that when I didn't complete them I got sad.  

A lot has changed here on Five Sixteenths since I set the goals back in April & I think it boils down to maturity & focus.  When I set those goals back in April of 2011, I didn't really have a plan. It was second semester senior year back then meaning I was focused on graduating, on having a job, on having a place to live.  I was in a great state of transition & I really didn't know it.  Thinking back on those days & what Five Sixteenths and myself used to be is like looking back on an extremely younger sister.  I feel so much more mature than I did over a year ago.

At the time in my life where I set those 20 before 24 goals I wasn't ready or capable of achieving them so when I felt like a failure & didn't want to admit it...I ignored them.  It was the best & the worst thing:

Worst:
I felt like I was lying.  I knew one day someone would leave a comment or have a thought that I just totally dismissed a project I started.  Keeping blog promises & actually doing what I say I am going to do is so important to me.  Leaving you all, though in much smaller numbers at the time, hanging was not something I was proud of.  I attempted to meet as many goals as I can but moving, & house stuff, & disappointment just got in the way.  Every now and then, a part of a goal would be crossed off but never something in full.

Best:
Because I was ignoring these goals, I could focus on other things.  Life got in the way yes, but eventually I was able to turn Five Sixteenths around, I was able to grow personally, & in fact meet a few more goals.  At this point I was focused on crossing them off so I didn't disappoint myself.  Doing what I wanted to do while moving in the general direction of my goals sort of happened naturally.  I completed other, smaller tasks that i didn't even know I'd be interested in.  My goals evolved, perhaps.

Why I Think I Failed:
During the Goal Week I hosted trying to encourage myself to achieve these goals, SMART goals were mentioned.  The SMART way of setting goals is as follows:
A goal should be Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely.

I think I failed because my goals were too Specific & too Measurable and I didn't know what I was getting into.  I set goals like this:
2. add eighty items to etsy
by December 15, I will add 80 items to my etsy shop
each month I will add 10+ items including:
prints, paintings, accessories, books, hats

This goal is Specific - outlines exactly what I want to add to Etsy
This goal is Measurable - says how many to reach the end & how much to do
This goal is Attainable - outlines the way this will be accomplished
This goal is Realisticat the time, there was plenty of time & ways to get it done
This goal is Time Based - a specific date is given

Yet December 15th (my birthday) came & went with barely a focus given to the shop.

What I should have done:
I've always liked the SMART way to set goals but when life gets in the way there's nothing you can really do about it.  I should have then set monthly goals, put them in my planner, & checked them off.  I've talked a lot about a blog planner & my calendar.  These things have kept me sane.  I thought, back in April of 2011, if I just had them on my blog I'd see them & do them.  Wrong.  I needed them in front of me everyday. 
Also, I wasn't ready for these goals.  I wasn't as focused on Five Sixteenths as a business goal as I am now. Time & focus does a lot for goals, these things cause you to re-evaluate and revisit what you've done.

What I am going to do:
Keep organized! I found a binder from Target that is for family budgeting & bill tracking that I am going to use as an all around go to binder for everything Five Sixteenths.  From tracking hours, to blog planning, to goal evaluating, to invoice organizing.  I think this will be the best bet for me now.  Now that I know more about what I am doing but still don't know everything, I feel more confident setting goals & knowing what I need to do to meet them.

I plan on breaking goals in to weekly & even daily tasks so that they are right in front of my face everyday.  I am also going to set less long term goals & more short term goals that way things aren't floating out in the future & are more in the present.

What I'd like you to learn from this:
Setting goals isn't perfect.  It's not about meeting them exactly, it's about learning from them & continuing on. I don't feel ashamed that I didn't meet these specific goals because I've met other goals that have put me in a better position than I was before.
Setting goals requires re-evaluation.  You won't always meet a goal on time or even meet a goal in the way you envisioned it.  Opportunities happen & so does life.  Don't beat yourself down because you met one thing but not another.  Grow & learn from it.
Setting goals requires timing.  You may not know when the right time is & it's better to set a goal & not meet it than to set no goal at all.  If you have a goal at least you have something to work towards in what ever way you can.  It's much better to accomplish a partial goal than to not have anything to aspire to.
Setting goals requires patience.  Be patient with yourself & amend or change something if you have to.  You'll be proud of where you ended up no matter what.
Setting goals requires daily activity.  Don't set it & forget it.  Fit parts of your goals into your daily life.  I plan on making out a list of things (not too lengthy) per day & per week that will get me to my goals.  Breaking them down into little chunks will help you see the end more clearly.

What I want to offer you:
Take a peak back at my blog planner post & see if that sort of deal appeals to you.  Then check out these super awesome printable planning things I've made for you + instructions on how I plan on using them in my Business/Blog Binder

**Disclaimer: This isn't the end all be all method for blogging.  Do what you wish as long as you love it.  However this style of blogging has helped me achieve a cohesive design, build readership, & most of all build quality content that I can reflect back on & feel proud of.  If you are interested in just keeping things as they are, no pressure.  Just do what makes you happy!**

I know this post was long & I know it seems like a way too serious post for Five Sixteenths but I half wrote it because I wanted to share and I half wrote it because I wanted to remember what I'd done & what I should be doing.  I'll be sure to share more about my Five Sixteenths Binder here in the future.







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2 comments:

  1. If you'd like a tool for setting your goals, you can use this web application:

    http://www.Gtdagenda.com

    You can use it to manage your goals, projects and tasks, set next actions and contexts, use checklists, and a calendar.
    Syncs with Evernote and Google Calendar, and also comes with mobile version, and Android and iPhone apps.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I think setting goals is a healthy and helpful thing to do. I think you're right though - goals can and should evolve. That's ok. I also think it's important to learn from the things that don't work out but also to not beat yourself up about it at all.

    Also - thanks for the printables :)

    Sarah
    http://acatlikecuriosity.blogspot.co.uk/

    ReplyDelete

Hi there, thanks so much for taking the time to comment. I love &value each & every one! If you have a question, I will respond as soon as I can. Don't be afraid to shoot me an email! If you have a blog, I will pop on by :)