As another year comes to an end, it is the perfect time to reflect on the goals you set for yourself, your business and what ended up happening. Odds are you hit some of your goals but fell short in others.
Regardless of the outcome, the goals we set for ourselves mean little to nothing if they are not truly aligned with outcomes that move the needle on what truly makes us happy. Did you hit your revenue goal? Yes. Great, what did that enable you to do? Did you complete the course/certification you signed up for? Yes. Great, how did you put it into practice to benefit you? Too often, we set goals simply for the prestige of getting it done, and when it is achieved, we are no better than when we started. This year, try taking a different approach to setting your goals and experiment with how it feels to goal set intuitively. To navigate and explore your aspirations with inspiration and curiosity.
Intuitive goal setting is not an official framework like that of S.M.A.R.T. goal setting or technical approaches used in project management, agile methodologies, and the lean start-up. Instead, it is a simple, honest approach that puts your joy in the center of your goals.
I know it sounds fluffy but bear with me here. As an entrepreneur myself, I have done the black and white goal setting, and I have explored many systems to plan and execute my goals rooted in process-driven methodologies and ROIs. So much so that my catchphrase that I typically use is “Nice guy that gets shit done.” – yes, I am that guy. So, it is safe to say that I am not trying to ditch the black and white approach, and I am just saying, give yourself some grace this upcoming year. Life is moving at a pace that no one can keep up with. More than ever, we are goal-setting, ambitious driven zombies with goals that are not even aligned with our actual values and passions.
Here are three simple ways to incorporate intuitive goal setting into your new year’s resolution.
Stop thinking about the end goal of completing the goal. Start thinking about enjoying the process that having the goal will enable you to experience. For example, you want to get 20 more clients this year – instead of looking at more clients as the end goal, look at how you want to help 20 people achieve their health and fitness goals. How you can be of service to 20 lucky people that will be empowered in their fitness journey. Find joy in teaching and motivating others to learn from you. That contagious passion for sharing your knowledge will give you the fuel you need to knock on more doors, ask for more leads, and appreciate every client you onboard.
Eliminate conventional expectations around timelines and tangible outcomes. In most cases, we set ourselves up with the expectation of making X amount of money by a particular timeline. We use quarterly reviews to track our sales and revenue. Test yourself to measure your progress around joy, contentment, happiness. Setup quarterly reviews to reflect on those intangibles and use them as an opportunity to take a deep dive introspectively. Sometimes it is hard to rewire our brain, especially when everything today is about being tracked and graphed for comparisons. Ditch the tracking and start reflecting. Align your goals and desired outcomes with achieving personal satisfaction.
Stop being selfish—no fault of our own. The human species is a self-centred creature. We navigate this world through our lens of reality and often overlook our biases. We want to achieve our goals and rarely think about the trade-offs that need to occur to achieve them. Start re-evaluating your goals based on what you need to give to achieve them. How will earning your goals positively influence others? How will it give joy, satisfaction, and contentment to those you come into interaction with?
To sum it up, we are not our goals, but instead, we are the values that drive them. The next time your goal setting, give yourself some grace and enjoy the process.
“Most people overestimate what they can do in one year and underestimate what they can do in ten years.” ― Bill Gates