Do you feel done with 2020? Like, you can’t wait for this year to be over, and start 2021 as if 2020 never happened? Because I am! I just want to pretend that 2021 will be better. So, if you’d like, be optimistic with me, and let’s plan how to achieve your goals and dreams in 2021!
I know that it can be hard to be optimistic with everything that happened this year. There are so many things that we were not able to do because of the pandemic. Some of our goals for this year are pushed back until next year or more.
For example, I was planning to attend medical school this year but it got delayed. So, I tried to do something else, and here I am prioritizing my growth and health. And blogging about it!
There have been so many unexpected events that happened that greatly affected our plans and dreams.
Fortunately (but in reality, this is really sad), we somehow know what we are facing. We are now more prepared to face this new normal. So, with these changes in mind, let us plan and achieve our goals accordingly, with or without COVID 19.
8 Ways to Achieve Goals and Dreams.
Achieving your goals and dreams is not just about doing them. Planning and staying motivated are big factors too! It always feels like we can do anything when we are just dreaming. But, in reality, if we are not prepared well, this spark inside us will eventually die out.
For instance, there are many of us who tried writing our new year’s resolutions on new year’s eve. We, excitedly, listed everything we wanted to achieve for the year without carefully thinking about them. And then, a month after, we already forgot about them. Shocking.
This happened a lot of times already! So, let’s not do it again, and as early as now let’s think about how we can achieve our goals and dreams, specifically in 2021!
1. Reflect on what you want to achieve (and why).
Before doing anything, first, we have to know what we want to achieve. Sometimes, we do things without thinking about what we want to achieve after, and why we are doing it in the first place. Consequently, we get lost in the process and/or we don’t feel fulfilled after doing it.
Also, there are some who really don’t know what to do. They are just waking up every morning, and work without a sense of purpose. And we don’t want this to happen. Because we are not robots.
In addition, there are also some who just want to achieve something because others are doing it. So, make sure that you are working hard for something because you really want to, not because of other’s standards.
Through reflecting, we look into our core and learn more about ourselves. What is it that we really want? Do we want this because it aligns with our values? Is it really us who decide on this? Why are we trying so hard to achieve this?
Write your answers and remember them.
2. Create a vision board.
After we know what we want and why we want it, it is time to visualize it. Visualizing is a powerful exercise where we are manifesting what we want. We visualize what we are feeling when we achieve something, when we achieve our goals. What do you see? What are you feeling? How about the people around you?
If you are not a fan of frequency and spirituality, visualization can also be explained by psychology. By doing it, we are focusing on this goal that we are thinking about. Also, imagining feeling happy and fulfilled can actually motivate us to achieve it.
Now, I know some of you will think that this is too childish or girly. It is not, okay?
You can create your vision board any way you want. You can put a lot of photos, or quotes, or doodles. You can also put it on a big board, a small frame, on your journal. It is okay as long as it reminds you of your goal and dream. Here is an example of how to do it.
3. Write SMART goals.
You’ve probably heard this a lot of times. But, yes it is important to write our goal using the SMART technique.
Just in case you don’t know this, SMART is an acronym for:
- Specific – What it is that you want to achieve?
- Measurable – How will you know that you’ve achieved your goal?
- Attainable – Is your goal realistic?
- Relevant – Do you really have to achieve this goal?
- Time-bound – When do you have to achieve this goal?
By having a SMART goal, you are focusing on this.
4. Make an action plan.
Now that we have a clear goal, it is time to make an action plan. We need a step-by-step plan on how to achieve this goal or set of goals.
Basically, it is a list of tasks until we reach our goal. To illustrate, each task is a step in the ladder going up to our main goal. We have to go through each step to reach the top! If we don’t have an action plan, achieving our goals can be overwhelming.
Every task should include a start date and a deadline, and a tool needed for this task.
Aside from making a goal more reachable, finishing one task can make us feel more motivated. We feel that sense of achievement for doing a task, and as a result, we are more inspired to do this more and more.
5. Prioritize your goals.
For 2021, I’m pretty sure that we want to achieve more. Maybe to fill the gap we have in 2020? It is good to have big dreams and a lot of goals, but we should know that we can’t tackle them all at the same time.
This is why we have to prioritize! And it is up to us which goals should we achieve first. We can prioritize them according to what aspect of our life it belongs. Like, is it for our career, health, relationship, and so on.
If we set so many goals, it can be challenging to achieve them all. If there is too much on our plate, we might not finish eating it all.
For example, in a buffet, there are some who just get food and then eat whatever until they are full, some can’t even finish what they got. They thought that it was so worth it. But, the thing is we can fully maximize our buffet experience by knowing what to eat first. For example, we can eat the proteins first, especially those expensive meat, and then carbs, soup, and dessert.
6. Follow through with the plan and be accountable.
Of course, we have to do our plan! After doing the tasks above, it is time to push through them. And this is the most difficult part. But the thing is, now that we have a plan and a guide, we just have to follow through with this.
Every time we feel lost, we review our plan. We check our reason, our vision board, action plan, and priorities.
However, it can be hard to push through sometimes, this is why we need to be accountable for our goals. We can have an accountable buddy, accountable coach, or we can post it on our social media. It is easy to forget our goals if it’s just us, especially if we have small willpower. It is nice to do things with others.
7. Reward yourself.
Rewarding ourselves greatly helps us to continue pursuing our goals. It makes us feel good, and it can also serve as a break. By rewarding ourselves, we are signaling our brain that it is good to achieve something. And this motivates us to keep on going.
Finishing a major or minor task in our action plan deserves a reward, okay? We’ve worked hard for this. And we are actually doing something to reach our goal!
8. Be open-minded and flexible.
Lastly, we have to stay open to the possibility that we can’t really follow through with our plan perfectly. There are instances that hinder us to do one task, and maybe we have to delay it for a bit. It is completely okay.
If we are not flexible, we are going to break eventually. Because there will always be external pressure that we can’t control. Sometimes, we have to swing with the wind.
I know that we are trying to be optimistic for next year but we really don’t know what’s going to happen yet. We just have to brace ourselves and do what we can.
Be ready to face 2021.
Planning takes time, and actually doing it takes more time. It is hard to go through it especially in the beginning. So, don’t forget to be kind to yourself.
This year is devastating and let’s not forget what we’ve learned this year. Let’s not expect that we will be going back to the old normal. All we can do is to face 2021 with our knowledge and experience of this year.
Also, remember that it is not necessary to start achieving your goals only on new years. You can start any time of the year.
I sincerely hope that 2021 will be better for all of us. Share what your plans are in the comment section!
Rooting for you,
Meredith Blaise ♡