How do you stay on track with your goals month by month? + 3 Mo Planning Guide
My friend Katelyn just had a baby and she has a doula that helps her. One of the things she shared with me that her doula shared with her is that babies thrive in routines – not schedules. I don’t have my own kids but I think that makes a lot of sense.
I think adults are like this as well. We thrive in having a routine and being able to answer : What’s the next step in my day?
Today, I want to talk about one routine that I have put in place that helps me stay on track with my goals month by month. Think of it as your “monthly review day”. I schedule one day each month to focus on planning for the month. I recommend doing this on the same day each month—mine is the first Thursday of the month—and sticking to it like Christmas!
On this day I sit down and really focus on three things.
First of all, I look back at what happened the month before.
Second, I focus on the upcoming month – What do I really want to accomplish in that month? What are my TOP 3?
I set a priority for three different categories—financial, personal and professional. I call these my “Top 3” for the month and then create three action items that will move me closer to achieving that goal.
First, I focus on my top three financial goals.
This might be sticking to my cash spending. Kyle and I use cash every week on spending for groceries, gas, eating out, things like that and I feel really really good when we stick to that cash spending. So one of my financial goals might be to stick to that cash spending. Or one of them might be to pay off a credit card or something like that. So I pick three action steps for that month that I can focus on.
Then I think about personal. I pick my top three personal action steps for the month. So that might be what book am I going to read?
How many times am I going to work out? One of my goals for this month was to pick up a new craft or a new hobby. I wanna get back into doing stuff just for fun.
My last is professional. I want to pick three top professional action steps for that month.
So – how do I come up with my Top 3?
Well, they all go back to the big goals I set for the year. Each year I sit down and go through an annual planning process. I’ve done this for many, many years. Actually since I was 21 years old – that’s almost 11+ years – that I’ve been sitting down and practicing annual plannings.
During my annual planning process I set 9 goals for the year : 3 Personal, 3 Professional and 3 Financial.
So each year I have these big big goals. But goals aren’t something you can achieve typically in just a month. So each month I create action steps that move me toward those goals. Monthly when I sit down, I not only look at my big picture goals but I also think about which action steps are getting me closer to that goal.
For instance: One of my big professional goals this year was to create a members only website. This members only site is going to house all my programs, a community and some really exciting new content. That was a big goal that takes months and months to make happen. So each month I choose one thing that is going to make me move forward toward that goal and that becomes my action step.
Are you ready to start seeing progress toward your big goals?
First I encourage you to pick one day a month to get out of your business to work on your business. Do some planning.
What do I really want to achieve this month?
Look back and see what happened last month. What went well?
What did you learn from that?
What didn’t go well?
What did you learn from that?
Planning isn’t just about checking things off a list, putting goals on a sheet of paper. It’s about moving you forward in an intentional way.