I thought Dave Seah’s idea for Groundhog Day Resolutions would be a fun system to try. Instead of making “New Year’s Resolutions” when you’re most tired (and probably feeling rather full and/or fat from all the holiday goodies you’ve consumed), make your resolutions on 2/2 and then review your resolutions on 3/3, 4/4, 5/5, etc. Pretty clever. I felt smugly ahead of the curve on February 2nd because I had some general-and-specific “five year goal” type things that I had made in the fall. Most of these goals were framed using Steve Pavlina’s suggestions – they were measurable and concrete (even the “subjective” goals), detailed, and worded in “positive, present-tense, personal affirmations” (i.e. instead of “I will try to exercise daily,” phrase it as “I exercise daily for at least 30 minutes.”). In addition to working out some five year goals, I also focused on a few and wrote out some specific milestones for the first two years.
Partway through last month, however, I found that I was forgetting what those specific milestones were, as my goals were tucked away in a Word document hidden in the bowels of my computer. With my new organizer aching for more pages to fill its cute plastic rings, I decided to make a personalized monthly goal tracker form, heavily inspired by Dave’s Task Progress Tracker and Concrete Goals Tracker from his Printable CEO series. A screenshot and details are below…
Click to view larger version in a new window. (Disclaimer: This was manipulated in Photoshop for readability and privacy. 😉 Goals shown here may not necessarily match up with actual goals that I have made.)
How it works:
- There is a fill-in box at the top to write in the next Groundhog Day Resolution review date.
- The right side lists my long-term goals. (There are “dimmed” goals that I want to keep before me, but that I’m not going to actively do anything about this year.) I’ve followed Steve Pavlina’s advice and put actual numbers/”ratings” for subjective goals like “being more patient.”
- The left side has spaces for me to write my specific monthly milestone related to that goal. As you can see, I may occasionally choose not to write specific milestones for certain goals.
- The big checkbox is for my monthly review. If I think I’ve met the milestone, I can check it off.
- The small bubbles are for more incremental “mini-milestones.” For example, I’ve written “15, 20, 25, 30” above the small bubbles for “run 3 miles (3o minutes) to represent numbes of minutes. When I achieve 15 minutes, I’ll fill in the bubble. Other bubbles that may not be marked represent each week — if I’ve been able to accomplish that certain thing each week, I can fill in a bubble.
- My original layout actually only had the bigger green checkbox, but I thought it would be more satisfying to add mini-milestone increments represented by the smaller bubbles.
- I trimmed the page slightly to fit in my new organizer, punched the left side, and folded the right side so that only the monthly goals show when you initially flip to the page. I can always turn the page or fold it out to be inspired by my long-term goals.
Combined with my daily calendar page that holds my daily routines tracker, this monthly goal sheet helps me to make sure I’m moving forward in the right direction. I think having the increments will help a lot this month and keep me from procrastinating too much!
At another more convenient time, I’ll post a public PDF that doesn’t have my scribblings all over it and see if I can make it more useful for other people. Comments are welcome!