Monday, January 28, 2013

2013 Goals

I love setting goals. And I make a lot of them. I make one for each month, a few for the entire year, and recently have started making goals that span the year starting on my birthday. It seem like a lot of goals, and I don't usually complete all of them. But that's not the point. The point is this:

It's good for me to have goals. They give me something to work on mentally, spiritually or physically. They help me re-examine how I spend my time. And not all of them are serious and mature. Some are fun and frivolous.

At the moment I have several "in progress" goals. January's goal is to spend a few minutes each week in planning. I'm a big fan of David Allen's Getting Things Done principles, and one component of the system is a weekly planning session. I have been doing this for many years, but was only planning certain things, like menus, so I wanted to be more focused on reviewing all of my projects and scheduling time to focus on the steps needed to complete them. So this month, I have taken a few minutes each week, reviewing my goals, projects and tasks, and fitting these things into my week. I have already seen a boost in my productivity. Simply reviewing my goals weekly helps me focus on those things that matter most to me.

For example, one of my yearly goals for 2013 is to exercise for 3 hours each week. Which is 180 minutes per week. As in 9,360 minutes in one year. So, I set up a spread sheet to track this - I enter the date, the exercise and the minutes, and the Excel spread sheet keeps my running total (pun intended) and shows me how many minutes left to reach my goal. By reviewing all my weekly obligations, I know exactly which days I will be able to spend some time exercising, then can plan accordingly (take my gym bag to work, etc.). So far this month, I'm a bit below what I need to average each week, but I'm making progress. And that's the object of goals - to work toward something, not necessarily achieve perfection.

February is right around the corner. I think I'll keep the weekly planning sessions. My goal for February is to spend 10 minutes, 3 times per week, stretching. I mean, I can hardly touch my toes. I'll keep you posted on my progress.

What goals are you working on this month/year?


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