There are only a few months left in 2019. You might be one of the few people who have followed through on those long-ago new year’s resolutions and are ready to cross the finish line with every goal completed by December 31st.
For the rest of us, it may be time for a quick status check to see where we are with our goals and re-focus our efforts to make the most of the remainder of 2019. Here are three simple ways to ensure that you finish the year with clarity and confidence.
1. Own your schedule - don’t let it own you
Time is a precious commodity. Busy schedules and over-commitments mean that we have less time to focus on the goals we’ve set for ourselves throughout the year. We’re left feeling overextended and unfulfilled.
The last few months of the year have the potential to be the busiest and most draining, thanks to back-to-school activities, holidays and other demands. To combat “time-drain” and the resulting fatigue, make sure you only say “yes” to the invitations and obligations that truly interest you and support your personal goals.
There is no need to be apologetic about how you choose to spend (or not spend) your time. If you give yourself permission to say “no” when you need to, you’ll have more time for the goals and projects that mean the most to you, and you’ll end the year strong and energized.
2. Realize that adjustment doesn’t equal failure
The objectives we set at the beginning of the year will naturally shift and evolve. As you move into the last quarter of 2019, revisit the plans you made earlier in the year. How are you progressing? Has anything shifted?
First, eliminate anything on the list that no longer makes sense or deserves priority--and don’t feel guilty about it. Next, take the key objectives that remain on your list and reprioritize them according to what you most want and need to accomplish by the end of the year.
Finally, write down an action plan with specific, manageable steps for each item and how you plan to get it done. Write milestones on your calendar and create a checklist to stay on track. It’s not too late to achieve what means most to you this year if you clearly identify what it is and let go of what doesn’t matter.
3. Look at the “small picture”
It can be overwhelming to look at a list of big-picture goals and thinking about all of the time and work it will take to reach them. Instead of focusing on what you have to finish the rest of the year, spend your energy thinking about what you can finish in a single day.
Split each item into smaller steps and set mini goals for yourself each day. Take time to celebrate as you meet milestones and move to the next step. Your progress will snowball quickly over the course of the next few months and before you know it, you’ll meet your big-picture objectives.
As you map out your plans for the rest of 2019, it’s the perfect time to think about what you want to achieve in 2020. What are you most proud of that you can carry into the new year? What lessons did you learn in 2019? Take ownership of your time and how you wish to spend it and you’ll have plenty to celebrate on December 31st.