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Setting Goals for 2016

Last week I had the opportunity to take some personal time.  If you follow me, you know that I went on a spur-of-the-moment goal-setting retreat to declutter my brain and get some motivation for the new year.  It was a great success, and I recommend it to anyone.  Setting goals can help clarify your thinking and aid in decision-making for the coming months.  At least that’s the theory.

Are you feeling like you're constantly putting out fires and never getting anywhere significant? Setting goals can help. I've listed my goals for 2016 and how I arrived at them. Check it out and be encouraged to set some for yourself!The truth is that I haven’t been in the practice of setting goals for YEARS.  I’ve been a little afraid of goals, to be honest.  Either I set them and forget them, or meeting them depends on factors outside of my control, or they become irrelevant somewhere along the way.  But this year I decided to give it another go.  The day-to-day putting out fires over a long period of time had left me without a big picture view of my life.  I figured that setting goals might be a good way to renew my vision — and so far I think it has. 🙂

I crafted goals for 2016 in several areas of my life — especially those that have seemed somewhat out of control.  I tried to make SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-based) — but many are not.  Most are more just habits I want to cultivate.  Maybe as I work on these throughout the year, I’ll get a better idea of how to measure them.  In the meantime,

I figure that setting goals probably takes practice just like any other skill. 🙂

So here are my goals for 2016:

Homemaking: Right before the new year I signed up for the Proverbial Homemaker’s email course called Homemaking System for the Domestically Challenged. (No comments on how perfect for me that sounds…!) The first step is to craft a homemaking vision, which I did. From that vision (and to help facilitate it), I formed these goals:

1) Develop a morning routine — To that end, I’ll be publishing an Ann-Notated later this month with a plethora of great resources about making morning routines.

2) Be consistent with meal planning — To help with this goal, I signed up for Build A Menu.  I need a tool to give me more motivation to be consistent, so I’m hoping Build A Menu will be that.

3) Develop a flexible deep-cleaning routine (although I hate the idea of a cleaning schedule, so what I have in mind is more of a rotating task list that gets done regularly, but not necessarily according to a schedule) and keep up with it.

4) Give the kids regular chores again.  When you’re used to five kids, and now you only have two at home, things like this go by the wayside.  But that is NOT good for the two that are left.  So yea.

5) Have music playing in the house every day.  Listening to music is important for my psyche. 🙂 And it creates a warm atmosphere in my home.

6) Sit down each night and make a written plan for how the next day will flow. This way I will hit the ground running in the morning (see #1).


1) Use my own tip for drinking water to remain hydrated.  I sorta fell off the wagon and need to get back on…

2) Make exercise part of my morning routine 5 days per week — alternate between using the mini-trampoline and doing yoga.

3) Move at a slower pace overall.  This is key for not getting overwhelmed on a regular basis, and therefore it falls under the fitness/health heading because it applies to my mental health, lol.  It means I need to plan enough time to do things, add some margin into my day, leave earlier for appointments, etc.

Blogging: I  spent a lot of time thinking about this area, and the goals I made are quite specific; but I don’t want to share all the details here and spoil the upcoming surprises.  So I’ll word them rather generally, if that’s okay. 🙂

1) Write an ebook.

2) Create a product (different than the ebook).

3) Start a second website to promote my editorial services.

4) Begin using a new medium.

5) Develop a month-long series.

6) Get a professional blog redesign (within 6 months).

7) Save up enough to attend a blogging conference in 2017.

8) Read one business book (or book about blogging) each month.

9) Write for an hour every morning.

Finances: This is where you find out just how much I am NOT a financial success story.  Which is WHY I WRITE ABOUT IT.  Writing about how to handle finances helps me learn about it and gives me accountability to actually get them under control.  And they are in better shape than they’ve been in awhile… just still not stellar.  Sigh.

1) Figure out a system that enables us to STICK TO the budget we set every month.  This is a very personal thing.  I’ve read how other people do it — and I’ve tried their ideas, like cash envelopes — but my husband and I have to figure out how WE can do it.  The Annie and Everything reader survey results show that this is a struggle for many of you, as well.  Let’s conquer this thing together, y’all!!  [If you haven’t filled out my reader survey yet (subscribers received it in their email, but anyone reading this is welcome to fill it out!), you can do so here: Short Survey for Annie and Everything]

2) Pay ourselves first — i.e., payoff debt or put money into savings BEFORE apportioning money to any other part of the budget.

3) Payoff all credit card debt by January 1, 2017 — This is a lofty goal, I’m afraid.  But not impossible, if we really focus on it over the long haul.  It will mean using our entire tax refund and any other windfalls we get.  And getting a bit radical like the no spend month we are doing right now.

4) Set aside an emergency fundfirst get $1000 (already done!), then later have a full month’s expenses saved up so we can start living on last month’s income by next year.  The balance between doing this and paying off the credit cards is why this might take the full year to accomplish.

5) Plan ahead and have money saved up for big expenses like Christmas shopping and college trips.  What a concept! 🙂

I did not set any marriage, parenting, or spiritual goals.  (Although one of Jessi’s marriage goals, at The Budget Mama, is one I might try to do each month anyway, just because I love the idea — can you guess which one it is?) Not that I won’t be working on those things, but I’m only one person; and too many goals would set me up for failure, I think.  What I have listed here is plenty to keep track of. *right here I need the emoji of the guy with the very big eyes who looks kinda scared**but I’m not on my Iphone**wish I knew the keystroke sequence**but I don’t**anyone want to help me out in the comments?*

Have you been in the habit of setting goals?  What do you have written down for 2016?

Shared on Thrifty Thursday


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  • I made a list of 35 goals (I won’t share them all here, but you can check them out on my blog page if you are interested). I didn’t realize I made so many until they were all written down, and now the year already feels short, like I need to get busy to make it all happen 🙂 It works for me, though. I think my favorite one you listed is to have music playing in the house all day. Who doesn’t love a goal that’s sole purpose is the joy of those in the household?! You make me want to turn on the radio. Yep. I said radio. Old school over here 🙂

    • After I wrote all these I got scared about how many there are, too. But the idea is to spread them out (the ones that can be) and concentrate on some more than others at various times of the year. Hopefully that way I’ll be successful. I’ll let you know! (And if I had a decent radio station around here, I’d be using mine more, too!) Thanks for the comment, Amanda! 🙂

  • Love this post, I personally feel goal setting is so important. You really need a plan to get there, which is why I love this post so much! Bonus: it fits in nicely with a post I wrote on Monday about goals! So I made sure to share with my followers on pinterest and Facebook! 🙂

    My favorite goal is the credit card debt, I have the same goal, one should be done this month-Yipee! and the other will take a year-ugh to emergency/things breaking.

    And sticking to the budget, So hard! Especially when that coffee is calling my name, then I add up the end of the month (because you know kids want drinks/treats too) and those small breaks are like 50+!! Nice to see I am not alone with the budget thing.

    Thanks for making your content so easy to share and so helpful!

    • Thanks, Jen! I gotta say that the no spend month we are doing right now is really helping with identifying WHY we weren’t sticking to the budget before. Hopefully some of the habits we are learning now will carry over to the future. And yes! Let’s kick those cards!! Check back in and let me know how you’re doing. 🙂

Hi! I’m glad you’re here!

I’m Ann (aka Annie), a veteran homeschool mom of five who HATES complicated!
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