This year I gave myself a few weeks to think it over, and I decided to go at this process in a different way. So even if you’ve already written down some resolutions (or totally sworn off ever writing them), I think you may find this helpful.
Goal Setting: The Old Way
In the past, maybe you did it like me. I sat down pen-in-hand and wrote all of my career + business goals first. They were ambitious. I believe in writing down your aspirations as a way of helping to make them come true. So I piled on as many dreams as I could fit on the page — prioritized and scheduled and (mostly) sanity-checked. But I included some stretch goals, too.
After that, I proceeded to set goals for the rest of my life. Goals for decorating, getting organized, spending time with my husband + family, getting in shape, etc. Unfortunately, my career goals were so ambitious that by the time I was ready to tackle my home, my spiritual life, myself, or my relationships — there was not very much time or energy left.
Hmmm. Well, I didn’t want to cross those things off the list. That would be like saying they didn’t matter, right? So I just left them there — even though the list had grown totally unrealistic and impossible. Next to the personal stuff, I wrote the words “bonus points” or worse yet “weekends.”
And How Did That Work Out?
Now, that I’ve looked back over my year, I can see that I got most of those business goals accomplished. I even got some of the personal ones checked off the list, too. But I would be lying if I said there wasn’t a lot of conflict (both internal + sometimes external) in the process. If I am being honest, there were times I even felt burned out this year. I’ve been going on some crazy personal journeys that required other people’s time, support, and commitment, too. When not unchecked, this can be a recipe for guilt and worry.
The good news is that burn out helped me confront some unhealthy habits and forced me to learn some new skills — skills I hope to share with you.
Goal Setting: My New Approach
So, this year, I am doing things differently: I am writing down those life goals first.
These are the things that I want for myself, for my family, for my home. They are not designed to be impressive or to look good on paper. They are just the things that at the end of the day, when I lay my head on my pillow, give me that heart-full-of-happiness feeling. These are the things that fuel my creativity + keep me going. Yes, I am still setting career goals for 2013. There are exciting places I want to take Ever Kelly, but now I see those ambitions as supporting my ultimate aim — to be happy at home.
A Few of My “Be Happy at Home” Goals for 2013
- Work on organization + beauty in my home! Create a peaceful, happy place to be with my husband.
- Entertain occasionally. Welcome other people in.
- Cultivate new friendships here in Seattle.
- Continue to take one day of rest each week as a personal and spiritual discipline. (I plan to talk more about this soon. This one is a life changer!)
- Great self-care + regular exercise.
- Experience significance. Work on things that matter.
- Celebrate the launch of my book with a special event + party. Decorate. Have fun.
- Take a vacation. Just the 2 of us.
Looking over this list, I can see that these are all things that I plan to do anyway. However, I frequently put them last on my list and sometimes even feel like I have to apologize for them. (Does this happen to you too?) So this year, I am going to be working on embracing these practices not as “bonus point” or “weekend” activities — but as the foundation for everything else in my life.
I am also using this list as a way to evaluate new opportunities as they come up rather than trying to cram everything in whether it fits or not. Already, I feel much calmer + more excited about the things that I am working on.
What about you? Any big mental shifts you’d like to make this year? Do you think being “happy at home” matters — and if so, what does that mean to you?