M y N ew Y ear ’ s H ead S tart WHY I SET MY 2020 GOALS IN OCTOBER 2019 I don’t really believe in New Year’s resolutions. Too often, they’re made without any kind of plan or attempt at follow-through. Still, I like the idea of them. I’m a very goal-oriented person, so I always have something in mind to strive for — but I lay out my goals in October, not January. When it comes to goal setting, I always think of this old saying: “How do you eat an
elephant? One bite at a time!” In that spirit, I try to check one thing off of my goal sheet each week. I’d highly recommend that strategy. If you’re anything like me, you’ll look back over the last
I started the tradition of goal setting in October back in the ‘90s because that’s the month when the fiscal year wraps up and because it’s the month when Christmas Law Firm first opened its doors. It feels natural to write down my goals for the next year on the anniversary of our opening, and I’ve found it helpful to get that deep thinking out of the way before the holiday chaos sets in. Between buying gifts, going to events, and planning time with family, Christmas can be a bit crazy with 7- and 12-year-old kids. It’s an incredibly fun time of year, but the chaotic holiday mindset isn’t conducive to setting goals, which requires quiet reflection. Every year, I set two big goals — one personal and one professional — and write them down on separate goal sheets. I start the process by sitting down and thinking. The world is so busy that I’ve found it necessary to block out some quiet time without the distraction of the TV, radio, phone, or my kids running around in the background. Once I’ve locked in on what I want most in my personal and professional life, I map out an agenda for the year, starting with my big-picture goal and then breaking it down into intermediate goals. Sometimes a big dream needs just three or four intermediate steps; other times, one might need a dozen. Next, I list the challenges below each of those steps and number them so I can get started.
12, 24, or 36 weeks and be amazed at what you’ve accomplished. Even if your goals are big, by writing them down, holding yourself accountable, and working on them week by week, you’ll accomplish more in a year than you might have in four or five. This year, my personal goal is to work on having a closer relationship with God, and my professional goal is to continue the expansion of Christmas Law Firm. We have three offices now, and I have my eyes on additional outposts in Columbia, Beaufort, and Savannah. Since October 2019, I’ve been diligently checking off one item a week to make that happen. If you’d like to try my method of goal setting for yourself, I have one last piece of advice: Don’t undervalue the planning stage. Ask yourself, “What do I want?” and then explore why these goals are important to you. Don’t worry if you can’t narrow down your big goals in a single sitting. The good ideas will come, but you’ll have to let them marinate. Eventually, your subconscious will tell you what you want to work on first, and personally, I find it comforting to make difficult choices between big goals. That way, I know I have more great ideas to take off the shelf going forward. If one of your goals for the year is to deal with legal issues hampering your family, don’t hesitate to give Christmas Law Firm a call today at 843-535-8000. I’d love to help you check that first box off of your list.
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