What a start to the year, am I right?! I had big plans to sit down the first week of January and get my goals sorted so I could plan out my most successful year, let myself dream big and honestly take a moment to relax after my kids were home for 2 weeks.
But, Monday morning when the kids were supposed to go back to school, Owen tested positive for Covid, which for our school means a 10-day quarantine, which we’re nearly done with. Fingers crossed the school remains open!
I had trouble getting this post together because for the past week I’ve been waffling between big dreams and feeling super aligned and motivated to absolutely exhausted and burnt out by everything happening. I know I’m not alone here, but damn—when is this craziness going to end?! While I don’t have the answer, I do know that it will end, it will pass and that we won’t be where we are today in another month or two.
Despite not feeling as psyched about the start of this new year as normal, I still know that I have big things I want to accomplish this year. In the past, I’ve written down goals with no real action plan and guess what? I never accomplish them. So, this year, I’m taking a very different approach to it. I’m being more specific about my goals, setting deadlines and giving myself more structure. That method might not work for you, but I like a good roadmap to keep me on track!
Here’s something BIG I have learned this past year—you absolutely do not have to know exactly how your goals will be accomplished, but you do have to fully believe that they are coming for you.
You have to know they are already yours. You have to feel that joy and excitement that comes with reaching them and you have to feel it NOW! The “how” will come to you if you have total faith that it’s meant for you.
So, let’s get into 10 tips for planning your most successful year with intention.
10 Tips for Planning your Most Successful Year
1. Let Yourself Dream
The best way for me to tap into what I really want is slow the heck down and get quiet. Meditation and journaling is how I enjoy getting my thoughts out of my brain and onto paper. The more regularly I meditate, the bigger I dream, and the more possibilities I see for myself. And, the more real and attainable those possibilities seem. It’s the coolest experience and a practice that’s become absolutely crucial for me as an entrepreneur.
After I meditate, I immediately journal, you never know what will come out. Just write without thinking and see where your brain goes. See what you uncover and just keep at it.
2. Brain Dump
Write down everything you think you want to accomplish or could accomplish! Don’t get hung up on whether you think it’s actually possible or not, just write it all down. All those big, wild ideas—let em loose!
And, save this list, it’s always fun to come back to a few months later to see what things you dreamed up and which ones you’re still excited about.
3. Narrow it Down
You might want to take some time, a few hours or a day, better yet, go outside and move your body! Then come back to your list refreshed and excited. Grab a cup of coffee if that helps and go back through your list. Put a star next to the items that really excite you. The things you absolutely MUST make happen this year. The reality is that you probably won’t get to everything on your list, so pick the things that you’re most excited about to start with. If you do hit those goals, then you’ll be even more motivated to move on down the list.
4. Break It Into Mini Goals
When you think about a big goal like “finally launch my business” it can easily feel so overwhelming. By breaking that big goal into mini goals, you can help yourself create a roadmap and actual plan for realizing the bigger goal.
Plus, each time you hit a milestone, you get this awesome feeling that you’re getting closer because you are, and it makes it easier to stay motivated and on track.
It also makes planning the launch of your big goal easier. Set that date and then back it out from there. Drop in your mini goals along the way into a timeline that works for you. Boom—you’ve got yourself a real plan and roadmap for having your most successful year yet.
5. Claim Your Income Goals
As women, sometimes I think it’s hard for us to talk about money. I grew up being told it’s not polite to ask someone about money, so talk of it became sort of taboo. But, I think it’s time to ditch that concept. Talking about money is the easiest way to get more comfortable with asking for more and owning your ACTUAL worth.
So, when you’re planning out your year, your income goals should absolutely be something you spend some time on. Get real with yourself—how much do you want to earn each month, or this year? I know not every business will have consistent monthly income, but I still think it’s smart to set a goal for yourself each month as a good baseline. If you have a season that’s even busier, amazing! But knowing about what you need to make each month helps you get there.
Now that you have that number, it’s time to back into it. With your products or services, how many do you need to sell to hit that goal? This is such a fun practice in my opinion. Every time I do it, I suddenly realize, oh, that goal really isn’t that hard to hit if I do all these things. So, forget just thinking of it as a big number, and again, break it down into smaller goals that feel more realistic and go from there.
It’s important to remember this is not set in stone. I like to think of it as a practice to help you see what’s possible. Maybe it’s a practice that helps you decide how many new clients you need each month, or one that makes you realize you might need to raise your prices to reach your goals.
Essentially, the point of this is to help you realize how you can hit your financial goals each month.
6. Set Some Timelines
A goal without a plan is just a dream. Dreams are great, but they’re even better when they become reality! So when it comes to reaching your big goals, create some timelines for yourself. No rush, remember, you’ve got a whole year. But if you’re creating a new product offering, consider how long it will actually take you to create it, decide when you want to launch and write that stuff done! Make a plan!
7. Keep Showing Up
Remember, when you set off to do big things, you will hit roadblocks. Don’t worry! Sometimes it’s a sign from the Universe that something better is coming, or maybe that client isn’t right for you. In the moment, it might feel like a setback, but if you keep believing your big goals are already yours, you’ll soon realize it’s not a setback at all.
I had a moment like this recently. I had several people sign on as clients quickly and I was so excited! And shortly after that, I had two other people reach out. I was so excited to get started on their projects, but then both ended up going with a different designer. At first, it felt like a gut punch. I was so upset, I spiraled for a bit then it hit me. These “no’s” were making space for some amazing “yeses” and sure enough within a few weeks, I had landed two DREAM CLIENTS!
My point, don’t take it personally. No’s are always making space for the right YES.
8. Don’t Lose Focus
Something I finally committed to creating this year is a vision board. For years, every manifestation book has talked about how seeing the things you want on a regular basis does something magical to your subconscious. I ordered myself a pretty linen board and plan on getting it hung soon as I can start pinning up the dreams I have for myself and my family.
Another way to stay focused is to find someone who’s business-minded like yourself and hold each other accountable for goals. This could be through monthly calls or weekly texts—whatever works for you! I did this for a while with a friend and found it so so so beneficial—maybe I’ll try to pick that up again this year.
9. Let Go Of Things & Ideas That No Longer Serve You
This is something that I really leaned into towards the end of 2021. For so long I was a blogger or influencer and I had an idea in my mind of how I should make my money, then I switched back to web design and thought, oh, I can’t be an influencer anymore. Then I had this (obvious) realization that there are NO RULES! You do you!
The greatest thing about being an entrepreneur is that you can do it exactly how you want to do it. It’s your business, create it the way you like. Coming to this realization has been really eye-opening and freeing to me. I’ve come to a spot where I feel like I get the best of both worlds. I can do the influencer thing when I want, but feel relieved that it’s not my only source of income anymore—it makes my job more fun and so much easier when I lean into what feels right for me.
10. Be Good to Yourself
You are the creator of your destiny, stop talking negatively to yourself and start treating yourself like the rockstar you are.
Take care of yourself, fuel yourself with good food, move your body, take care of your mind, don’t take yourself too seriously, have FUN! And enjoy the process.
The more fun you have, the more success flows to you naturally. It sounds like a strange concept, but it works. I know from experience that when I’m happiest and life feels easiest, my business follows suit.
Despite this year starting off a little rocky, I’m still hopeful that so many amazing thing are coming for my business, my family and the world (aka, praying Covid is going away asap!). I hope this post is helpful and I can’t wait to see what big things you dream up and accomplish this year!
BTW, is Flodesk or ConvertKit best for your small business, and how to create beautiful Instagram reels and videos.