How to WRITE and REACH your 2016 goals

Fanily goalsAs the confetti settles and we face the bitter fact that winter break is coming to an end and we can't binge on Netflix all day, most of us start reflecting on the prior year and how we can change for the better for the new year ahead. Making new year's resolutions is common place, but this usually translates into lofty, unrealistic ideas that we would love to accomplish, but usually by the first week of the new year have gone out the window!  Instead of setting resolutions, I try to focus on realistic goals for myself, my class (when I'm teaching), and my business. Winter break is a natural stopping point, just like the beginning of the year, so why not reflect on the goals set at the beginning of the year and set new ones for the year to come.  I set deadlines to meet these goals and have checkpoints throughout that period of time to make sure that I am in fact on my way to meeting that goal. I recommend that you go through this process yourself before trying to teach your kiddos to do this.  Then you will have an example to show and hold them accountable too.  Below is the process that I follow to set goals for myself.

 category  Step 1: Categorize and Prioritize 
 I have so many things that I want to do and do better  than I did before, but keeping in the mindset of REALISTIC I have to narrow that list down and categorize.  I start with big broad categories like work or school. 
  Step 2: Narrow Broad Categories to Specific Goalsnarrowed goals 
 Then I narrow down those broad categories into more specific topics and goals within those topics.
Step 3: Rewrite Specific Goals as S.M.A.R.T. Goals
I make sure these questions are answered in my rewritten goal

  • Specific: What specifically do you want to accomplish?
  • Measurable: How will you know if you accomplished it?
  • Achievable: How can the goal be achieved?
  • Relevant: Is this important now?
  • Time-bound: When will your goal be met? When will you monitor your progress towards this goal?
Planning goals is one thing, but setting deadlines is essential to reaching them.
  Step 4: Map It Out on a Calendar Finally, I make a plan to reach these goals by determining when I will start working towards these goals and how long it will take, realistically, to reach this goal and set an end date.  Then I will add to the calendar dates that I will check in with myself by rereading these goals and reflect on what I need to do to continue on the path of reaching this goal.  Grab these goal planning pages for your students and yourself here. How do you establish and reach your yearly goals?

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