I might be sharing something somewhat nontraditional today – but I’m okay with that. No one said mainstream is the best way to achieve something. The beauty of today is that there are often more than a plethora of ways to achieve a goal. So I am here today to chat with you about starting to prep your goals, visions, and dreams for 2019. Yes – you read that right goals, visions, and dreams for 2019. You might be wondering – wait we still have three months left in 2018 – why in the world should I start now? Two words – Holiday Season.
If you are anything like me, in the past I’ve left goal planning for that week in between Christmas and New Years – only to be disappointed because, well it didn’t happen. And yet another year started and I felt behind and lacking vision. So this year, I am trying something new. I will be spending bits and pieces of the next three months reflecting on the past year and planning for the year ahead. I’ve learned something about myself this year – the earlier I start the more likely I am to be successful. I’d love to invite you to dedicate – even the smallest bit of time – to join me on this journey over the next three months. So how exactly do I plan to tackle this? Don’t you worry – I’ve laid out my approach below.
The Strategic Approach to Preparing for Your Most Fruitful Year Yet
There are about 14ish weeks until the last day of 2018. Using the approach outlined below, I plan to start working towards setting up 2019 to be fruitful, purposeful, and successful starting this week. I will be sharing updates on my progress, templates, things to consider, helpful resources (and maybe a giveaway or two) through my newsletter (you can join here) and with the hashtags: #daniellejacquelineco #djco2019goalsetting throughout the 14 weeks. Other helpful, inspiring, and relevant content I discover during this process will be shared on facebook so be sure to follow along there as well.
1. Week 1: Take the Enneagram Test – the ever so popular personality test has been a pretty hot topic in the industry. I’ve taken some personality trait tests in the past and I have taken the short version of this test as well. Here is a great Real Simple Article that outlines what the test is all about and it has been so popular this year (a direct link to the test is included in the article as well). Bonus – take the test with your significant other and see where you both fall. I plan to share more on how I hope to use the results to align my efforts for the next 13 weeks.
2. Week 2: Evaluate – This next step will be purely data based. So I plan – and would encourage you to do the same – to take a deep dive into your numbers based on goals you’ve set forth last year. Here is where, as I mention above, I fell short. I didn’t honestly have the time to pull together goals for 2018 because I left all this important prep work to the busiest time of the year! But despite not having written goals, I do have items I have been tracking. Things like – the number of inquiries, number of bookings, followings, engagement. This step is purely based on the numbers and shouldn’t go beyond looking at exactly how your business did/is doing.
3. Week 3: Reflect – I plan to use this week to really reflect on all aspects of my business – the good (so what went well), the bad (what isn’t/didn’t work), and what areas could use improvement. I plan to use this week to take a good hard look at the last year and carefully evaluate every aspect of YSDE from the past year and thereby reflect on the future direction of YSDE for the new year. Some of these efforts will carry over into the next week – mostly because they along with week 2 efforts will directly impact week 4.
4. Week 4: Select Word of the Year – this week will take into account the work completed in the three weeks prior. It will also include a very basic overall vision of what you envision the next year to look like. For me I like to select a single word that ultimately guides the year and one that can touch on all aspects of my life – from personal, to business, to family. I plan to share more on how I will approach this step as we get closer.
5. Week 5: Create a Vision Board – Pull out those favorite magazines or create a pinterest board (I likely will do both!) to develop a board of inspiration that touches on how you envision 2019 to look, what you envision it to encompass, and what inspires you.
6. Week 6: Define The Dream(s) – Using your reflection, evaluation, word and your vision board, I encourage you to define (and write down) your big dreams for 2019. Keep them big and broad. I plan to spend time just brainstorming early all the dreams and then narrow and focus them. Stay tuned for how I plan to do this!
7. Week 7: Map the Small But Mighty Goals – Okay here is where you take those big goals and create smaller ones to help you work towards them. Again brainstorming first, and then narrowing, focusing, and aligning them with the big goals is how I plan to tackle this step. Templates and guidance will be shared for this week as well!
8. Week 8: Construct a Road Map – All the steps leading to this one have bene about getting all the ideas down on paper or in a google doc. This is where we start to associate goals with quarters, months, and help you create that road plan to achieving big dreams in 2019. Laying out your dreams and vision across the year will identify how each dream should be worked towards.
9. Week 9: Gather the Tools – Here is where I plan to think through what tools I’ve been using, how I have been using them, and what is missing? What can I do to streamline things in the new year? What can I do to improve my client experience. This week will be all about taking a close look at what tools are making your business work, which tools are somewhat prohibitive, and which ones you should consider adding. I also plan to look at how I am using them to really evaluate
10. Week 10: Plan Q1– These next two weeks are big! Here is where we will take all the work we’ve done up until this point and start to create a master plan. I will share my strategies for this step as we get closer.
11. Week 11: Sketch out Q2, Q3 & Q4 – This will only include a rough outline because we will set aside time during our Q1 plan to plan for Q2. The rough outline will serve as a guide but the designated planning day in Q1, Q2, and Q3 will allow you to create a more concrete plan so that it can be adaptive and flexible to what was achieved previously.
12. Week 12: Align Your Processes – Taking the preliminary plans put together for Q1, align your current processes to help support the plans you’ve laid out. Ensure that your systems support your plans and that they still work for the direction you are planning for. We will take a close look at how to marry your plans with your processes to ensure you are working efficiently!
13. Week 13: Celebrate – that’s right after the past 12 weeks of prep work, I plan to take this week off to celebrate (the week also just happens to fall right on the week of Christmas so in a way this is the best reward and perfect timing to step away and enjoy the holiday with family!). This week will allow for time to really appreciate all the work that was done over the past 12 weeks. I plan to spend some quite moments re-reading steps 1-12 and making sure all the pieces are in place to kick off 2019 next week (but very limited – this week is very much about being present and celebrating!)
14. Week 14: Take the First Step – Just as simple as it sounds, but often the hardest part. Putting into motion the plan. If you’ve worked through the steps above, this should be simple this year! You are armed with plan – now put it into action and help bring those big dreams to life.
If you are interested in joining me on this preparatory journey, be sure to join the newsletter community for templates, tips, and other guided content planned for the months ahead. Also feel free to tag me and use the hashtags: #daniellejacquelineco and #djco2019goalsetting on any social media posts you plan for prep work you are doing! I’d absolutely love to cheer you on!! I hope you enjoy this simplified, strategic approach to making 2019 your best year yet! And the encouragement from a community – as we work towards a common goal!
Here’s to the reflection, evaluation, dreaming, and planning ahead – I look forward to sharing these efforts with you and encouraging you along the way!
Top image via (Caroline Logan Photography for the Caroline Logan Workshop Styled Shoot)