It’s *January* – that time of year when I’m really excited for everyone because of all the wonderful possibilities the next year holds. It’s a chance to start fresh and refocus on what we care about most.
Because of this, yearly planning is something I look forward to each year – and as a result, I’ve tried lots of different goal setting methods over the years. I’ve tried video programs, workbooks, and read and listened to lots of different approaches and ideas.
In the last 5 – 10ish years that I’ve been setting annual goals, it’s truly made a difference in my life. I can see a real difference between the years when I had lots of intention going into the year versus those years where I didn’t have as much clarity headed in.
Those years that I planned pretty well, I took lots of consistent action and made a big dent in some of the bigger accomplishments in my life. Those other years… well I can’t say they were my most exciting or most fulfilling years…
With that in mind, I wanted to share a few goal setting resources that I’ve used & loved and have truly made a difference in my past 10-ish years. So often I think we do best by learning in our preferred learning formats, so I wanted to share goal setting resources in a few different formats in hopes that you find one that resonates with you if you’re looking for ideas or inspiration.
Here are 3 annual goal setting resources that I’ve found to be super helpful:
- PowerSheets (for those who enjoy writing prompts to help them reflect & plan) – I have truly *loved* using PowerSheets since the start of 2021. It comes as a (gorgeous) spiral notebook with several pages (maybe 10-20 pages) of useful prompts to help you reflect on your previous year and guides you in determining what you’d like to focus on the following year. After the initial brainstorming section, there are monthly review pages for each month of the year so that you can tweak and solidify your goals as needed throughout the year. I love how all the questions & prompts are super effective and that it feels like a *fun* process along the way. This was one of the *best* purchases I made in 2021 which helped me stay intentional and satisfied throughout my year, and I’m excited to be using it again in 2022.
- Your Best Year Ever (for those who enjoy learning via videos) – For about 2 years, I purchased Michael Hyatt’s Your Best Year Ever and I really enjoyed it. I used this system before having kids when I had a little more free time, so it was a good fit back then. It’s a mix of videos and workbook exercises that walk you through small steps that culminate with you coming up with your 2022 goals. This is a great system for those who enjoy a video series that goes along with the written exercises (it also has options for extras like an in-person conference, etc.)
- Short (2-3 question) annual review (for those who want a super quick & simple process). For those who want a simple yet effective way to review the prior year and plan for the next year, there are several great options out there, and many are free! Tim Ferris (author of multiple #1 New York Times bestsellers) shares his annual review process in his post here, or if you prefer to listen, he talks through his process in this short podcast episode. Chris Guillebeau (New York Times bestselling author & organizer of the annual World Domination Summit) shares a similar straightforward review process that he uses yearly on his website. These two are simple & straightforward yet effective – and I’m sure there are many more great ones out there as well.
My 2022 Goals + Process
This year, just as I did last year, I used PowerSheets to help me look back at 2021 to come up with fulfilling and fun goals for 2022.
I worked on these goals most mornings during the week between Christmas & New Year’s – which for me, naturally just feels like a great time to pause and reflect on the year.
Although I don’t love waking up super early, thinking deeply about how I want my next year to go is super important to me and so I got up early those mornings to get this done since that’s the time I’m most fresh and focused… and realistically my best time with a toddler in the house. (Usually I did this around 5:30am each morning & spent about 45 minutes each time. This felt like enough time to make progress yet not so long that I felt drained afterwards.)
After about a week of tinkering on this, I felt like I was in a good place with what I wanted out of the next year – and it felt so good!
Here are a few of my 2022 goals:
- Weekly chats/walks with a girlfriend/loved one – With baby boy # 2 due in late February (yay!), I’m heading into a year where I know I’m going to be (lucky enough to be) giving a lot of myself – and I know that in order to give as much as I’d like to, I also have to simultaneously pour into myself so that I can realistically do so. In the past year or so, I’ve definitely found that going for a walk & chat with a close friend or loved one is something that helps me tremendously. It feels great to talk through all my feelings about whatever is going on at the time (and from my past post-partum experience I know that I will have a lot, lot, lot of feelings to talk through 😉 ) and I feel such a boost catching up with someone I love. Plus, the fresh air and walking itself make me feel better. This is something I know is realistic and doable, so I’m happy to make this something I aim for most weeks.
- Friend outing/date outside of the house once a month – Along the lines of my first goal, I know that especially during those first months postpartum it can sometimes feel impossible to leave the house without babies/kiddos, but I think it’s super healthy to do so – and so I’m making a point to make sure I do this at least once a month. I’ll either meet up with a girlfriend, loved one or my husband. A fun goal for sure!
- Spend 3-5 hours per week on writing for fun – Along the same lines of taking care of myself so I can best take care of my growing family, this is something that I didn’t expect to want … but I’m prioritizing because I can see the boost I get from doing something fun & creative. As a mom (and I’m sure so many others can relate) it can sometimes feel like I spend most of my time thinking about whether everyone in my family is getting everything they need to thrive – and I love being able to do that for my family… but although it feels a little silly to admit, I think that doing something just for the fun of it is something that actually makes a huge difference in my overall health & happiness. I don’t want to put any strict daily amounts that I need to hit or a certain number of blog posts that I need to write because that’s not really in line with what I’m looking for – instead, I just want to make sure I make time most days for 15-30 minutes of doing something fun & creative that’s just for me and my own joy & well-being … which for me is writing. I’m guessing most of that writing will end up here on the blog… but we’ll see. My main goal is just to give myself that time to write which I know leaves me feeling more energized, happier, fulfilled, and peaceful.
- Spend 10 minutes a day 1-on-1 with each kiddo – As I prepare for adding a second little guy to our family, I want to go into it with one main intention – that my kids feel equally loved and special. I grew up with an older brother, and I always felt that way – and I feel so lucky to have been raised like that. My brother is absolutely one of my most favorite people in the whole world, and I’d like to do what I can to encourage that kind of love between my boys because I think it’s such a special way to grow up. I also want them both to feel valued and special for the unique little people they are, and I love what I’ve read from Dr. Alisa Van Langeveld that something as simple as spending 10 minutes 1-on-1 with each little guy can make such a difference. Though I know I’ll be spending lots of time with both my boys, I hope this 1-on-1 time helps them both feel special and loved as they are (especially during this year of transition as we add our second little guy to our family) and I hope it supports them becoming close as brothers too.
I have a few more goals about my kiddos and marriage, but for their privacy I’ll keep those off the blog for now… but all in all, I have 8 goals and I feel really good about all of them & about my intentions going into 2022. It’s going to be a big year of change for me and my family as we welcome another little miracle into our family… but with this time spent reflecting beforehand, I feel really happy and optimistic heading into this year. ❤️
I hope these resources and ideas were helpful to you & that sharing some of my goals was helpful too. I totally get that we aren’t all goal-setters and what works for some doesn’t work for everyone – but hopefully there were a few ideas in this post that benefit you and your year to come.
Wishing you and your loved ones a wonderful 2022! 🎉