“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.”
Drawing on Mr. Franklin’s wisdom, I like to occasionally review the goals and plans I made in January. Checking in with my goal planning a few times during the year is a fairly recent addition to my process, and it has become the key to helping minimize failure and maximize success.
I used to write my list of goals in January and that was it. No plan set out for accomplishing each goal. No progress report mid way through the year. Instead, I would simply ride the wave of New Year excitement only to experience a feeling of failure by December.
If this cycle sounds familiar, this post is for you. Today I’m sharing simple but specific things I do at these critical check-ins. Without them, I have a list of hopes rather than a clear path to success.
Review and Revise
Just like in January, I make a date with my goals at least two more times during the year. I encourage making this a celebration! Light scented candles, cut fresh flowers, play music, plug in twinkle lights, wear cozy clothes, and savor a slice of cake. I’m a fan of treating yourself while helping yourself.
Afford plenty of time for this review session. This is not a time to whiz through and simply check things off before needing to start dinner. Certainly begin with checking off what you’ve accomplished (yeah!!) and, equally as important, strike what no longer suits you. Goals that no longer suit us are simply evidence of our own growth, so look at it as making room for that which serves who you are now. In fact, holding on to old goals that no longer serve us can actually hold us back from living the life we want. It’s very OK to let something go.
If you’re unsure if a goal is still important enough to remain on the list, imagine that goal being reached - what does that look like? How does it feel? Is it still worth your time and effort? Or, as the saying goes, if it’s not a YES! it’s a no.
Next, review your planning pages for each goal still on your list. An accompaniment to your list, planning pages are essentially a schedule (ie: a calendar, store bought or hand made work equally well) for dropping in all of the steps needed to accomplish your goals. This schedule becomes your road map to reaching each goal one step at a time and in a thoughtful, steady, clear manner throughout the year.
Does the road map you laid out in January still look realistic or are modifications needed? Life happens and it doesn’t take much to throw off our best laid plans. Give yourself plenty of time and space to modify your road map as needed. Checking things off the list feels great, but this step is the critical one for success.
Remember, this date is a celebration focused on creating the life you want to live. Planning one dream, meeting one goal or having several small successes that lead you to the big success - these are the things that keep you squarely in the driver’s seat to living a happy, fulfilling life.
Post your goals where you can see them
Keep your planning pages handy where you can refer to them often
Make a date with your goals two or three times a year and revise as needed
Reward yourself for goals accomplished
Willingly strike unmet goals that no longer suit you
When setting or reviewing goals, ask yourself these questions:
Am I living the life I want to live?
What do I want or need more of? Less of?
What are some realistic ways I can accomplish that (even if it takes time)?
With that, I’m off to spend some quality time with my goals and a piece of cake! Life happened to me, too, and now my road map needs adjusting. There are some exciting projects on the horizon! If you have goal planning tips you’d like to share in the comments below, I’d love to hear!
How can I use eco-dye panels in my quilting and sewing?
When I recently displayed my eco-dye workshop at the Quilting Connections event, I anticipated this question and filled my booth with samples. For example, those of you who attended the event may recognize the pin cushion at the top of this post, as well as this pillow. Pillows might be my new favorite way to incorporate eco-dye fabrics into everyday living.
Only one panel was used to make the 16” pillow shown here. I cut the panel into pieces for the center triangles, the “floral” border (how true), and the four outside corner blocks. My naturally dyed solids and a few scraps of commercial fabric were also incorporated. You can see how a little goes a long way. I’m really happy with how this turned out and will share more samples in the coming weeks.
If you’ve made a project using my eco-dyed fabrics, please share it: #tierneybarden. We’d all love to see! It’s also a great place to see what other talented makers are doing with my naturally dyed fabrics. Be inspired!