This post originally appeared as a newsletter to The Company in October 2017, but has been updated. This poist also contains affiliate links, which help support Ginger & Co.
Yes, you read that title correctly – it is not too early to start thinking about your goals for 2018. But Laura, we just started November.
I know, I know. But hear me out on this. When it comes to the beginning of the year, we always make all these goals and plans that take us to the end of the year? That’s a twelve-month span, and 2018 is less than three months away.
Y’all a year goes by fast. Think about where you were exactly a year ago – in November 2016. I know I was in a hellish job with stress levels off the charts. The management at my former job was so awful, I was never off the clock. I developed an eye twitch that lasted until May this year (I was let go in November after the election – so it stayed for six more months).
When 2017 rolled up to the door, I had all these grand plans – like publishing two novels this year.
Y’all know that I’ve published no novels and I won’t publish any this year. I was too stressed from my job and then being unemployed for seven months.
But now I’m in a much better place – I have a job I freaking love, and when I come home, I’m actually enjoying my time off. While I still aim to be self-employed at some point, self-employed is not fun when you can’t afford to be self-employed.
Now that I do have a job and I’m actually mostly happy (big words for someone who has battled with depression for 10+ years), I’m feeling really optimistic about 2018. But I’m also being realistic. I’m taking my time on planning my goals. Knowing my limits on what I can do in a day. While I’ll be planning 2018 basically all this month, I wanted to give you a few tips to make sure you plan successfully.
1. Start with 2017
Like I mentioned before, I had some pretty damn lofty goals in 2017. Life said “slow down” on those goals. So my first task is to take a look at my goals for 2017 (career, blog, writing, life) and see what I accomplished and what I straight up failed at.
Personally, I love some old fashioned index cards to start writing down goals. Anything I think I might want to accomplish next year gets a card. Not all of them will see the light of day, but I start out with what I wanted out of 2017. Those definitely get priority.
2. Don’t try to do it all at once
If you try to plan twelve months out at once, it will get overwhelming.
I’m taking it slow on goal planning because I’m planning for a whole year so I don’t get overwhelmed. I’ve got a note in Evernote I keep all my plans in. I’m a big believer in goal planning, whether it’s for your business or where you want to be in your personal life.
While I’m keeping plans in Evernote, I’m also keeping a paper version. I grabbed a monthly Day Designer and I’ve been using it as a calendar before my actual Day Designer comes later this month. For my birthday, I’m also hoping to get these Powersheets. I’ve heard about them for years, but I’ve never used them. Figured if I’m really serious about planning out 2018, they’d be worth getting.
When you sit down to plan, take it step by step. Start with quarter one, and be realistic. What goals you plan for quarter one will help you plan for quarter two, quarter three, and beyond. Definitely, do not try to plan out the whole year at once, and it’s okay if your goals get a little looser toward the end of the year.
But now that it’s November, you should definitely be looking ahead to the future and 2018.