Happy New Year! I hope your holidays were relaxing and special. Check out this cool sand castle made by Chris, an awesome sandcastle maker who comes down to the island and creates super cool things! I didn't want 2020 to end without sending you an encouraging note and a simple suggestion for begining the new year! If you’re like most business owners, you’re looking at setting goals for 2021. We know that goals can drive us to accomplish more than we might do on our own. And, we all have different feelings surrounding goal-setting, as well as past success/failure experiences. If you’re like me, you want to change EVERYTHING at the same time, which rarely works because I feel overwhelmed and burned out within a few days or weeks. One of my favorite goal-setting nuggets is Setting Goals in Phases. When you set goals in phases, you start small, with things you know you can and will do. The Basics... Phase 1 Goal - One commitment that you absolutely know you'll follow through on. Phase 2 Goal - After you have been doing the Phase 1 goal for a couple weeks, add another, Phase 2 goal...still something you are fairly confident you can commit to doing. Now you are working on both Phase 1 & 2 commitments. After another couple of weeks, add a Phase 3 goal. At that point, the Phase 1 & 2 goals are already part of your routine. These goals can be related to your personal life or business! Let me give you an example from my life... Full disclosure, I struggle with self-care, because I often prioritize others above myself. I know this about myself. I also know many of you struggle with this too. Last week, I got out a couple of mornings to walk the dog and it was great. I remembered how much I love walking in the morning - the cool air and quiet time to listen. This morning I was actually out early enough to see the sunrise. So, for my new year Phase 1 goal, I decided to get out for a walk (even 20 minutes) each weekday morning. This is something I know I can do because I've already felt the pull and I enjoy it. (I hope some of you check in and ask me how I'm doing with it!!) For my Phase 2 goal, I will commit to morning meditation time and visualizing my 2021 goals as accomplished...then listening for creative ideas on how to make them happen. For my Phase 3 goal, I will commit to washing my face morning and night. This one might sound silly, but I don't always find time to wash my face - either you will relate or think I'm crazy! You can see I really need to work on prioritizing myself (lol)! Why does this work? Many of us have trained ourselves not to believe ourselves because we haven't followed through on past commitments. When we tell ourselves we're going to do something, our "self" scoffs, because it knows we probably won't! I've run into a few people recently that say they don't like setting goals. I'm not sure if it's really that they don't like setting goals, or that they feel worse about themselves when they don't accomplish them. When we start with small goals that we know we can do, it helps rebuild trust with ourselves little by little, which helps us feel better about ourselves. What you need to keep in mind... It's important to know yourself – What feels right or wrong? What sends you into overwhelm? We need to be aware of our thoughts, our body, our feelings, etc....they can let us know that we're on the right track, or we need to make some course corrections. Also, as we work with others, we need to remember that not everyone works in the same way. Perhaps you are someone who sets bigger goals to push yourself, and these small phase goals may not be for you - that's awesome! However, there might be someone in your organization who works better with the small goals.. One hiccup that could be waiting for me with my Phase 2 goal is that my 'to-do' list is usually calling loudly to me in the mornings...so when I add the meditation time, I'll need to get out of bed a little earlier or be better at giving myself permission to take the quiet time. If I fall down, I want to be kind to myself and reset my focus on the goal. I encourage you to do the same. :) If you want to chat with me about how you can set your Phase 1, 2 & 3 goals or another topic, reach out to schedule a 30-minute complimentary call with me at the contact page at on website. I'm excited to serve you and connect with you!