12 January, 2016

2016 Goals

This year I've worked really hard on goal setting. It's taken a lot of reflection, letting go, focus, and reality checks. I went from hard core enthusiasm to awful pessimism in one day. Then back again. Not fun.

It's not a fine line between optimism and reality, it's a thick black one.

When I realized that it depressed me. I spent some days being awfully grumpy, ready to give up my professional work. Family first. But we all know I'm better, the family is better when I work, I was really struggling to see how I could be happy in both my business and my family life. But then MY reality showed through.

First, I spent some time talking with other professional quilty friends. They calmed me down, reminded me that I'm not the only one struggling with this, and encouraged me to still set high goals. They all agreed that the goals should be very specific. I've done that in the past, but I drilled down even more this year.

Second, I delivered a trunk show. Now, I give about 10-15 trunk shows a year. I absolutely love trunk shows. Not because I get to share my quilts and stories, but because I see audience reactions and talk to people about inspiration. It's amazing to know you inspire people to try new things.

To get to this trunk show last week I worked with my husband to get the kids to school. I turned to a friend with a day home to watch my boy. And no one got upset or cranky about it. We worked together to make it happen. Totally doable. A good reminder.

Third, I read this post from Anne Weil. And boom, it made me see that what I was doing was focusing on the hard stuff, the things I didn't do. Nowhere in there was I paying attention to the things I did accomplish and can do quite well. Talk about a glass half empty approach.

So I took my dog for a walk on a sunny winter day and found some clarity. With a bit more work I have 2016 goals. This year I broke them into categories and made them pretty specific.


1 Secure contract and write 4th quilting book.
2 Finish and launch new website and blog.
3 Teach at least one 3-day workshop.
4 Sell more local classes, potentially self hosted.


1 Try climbing and Crossfit and maybe Muay Thai again.
2 Leash train our dog, Roo.
3 Remember and celebrate friends' birthdays.
4 Relearn bread making.


1 Learn to English Paper Piece.
2 Finish 10 quilts from the Quilts Under Construction List.
3 Keep a weekly writing date.
4 Label all the quilts.

To get all this done I'm taking the advice from a few people about creating monthly breakdowns of the tasks that will get me to these goals. This Master List will keep me more accountable to myself and help me stay on track.

And in all of this I need to keep room for new adventures and possibilities!


stitchinpenny said...

Good luck on achieving your goals. The calendar thing is an interesting thing that a guidance counselor taught my daughter in the third grade. No goal is real unless there is a definite statement of both the goal and the time frame. My daughter has used this theory well for the last 28 years and is now the a highly placed executive. The part your have to get is if a goal isn't reached you have to figure out why it wasn't achieved and make a decision on how to go forward to achieve or abandon the goal and not give up on the other goals in your life. The ones she has had to abandon have been interesting in shaping her ability to succeed at the rest. The biggest message is don't feel bad about not achieving the goal because it is past in time or place. You can put that goal where it needs to be. If your other goals depend on the completion of that goal change the time, but make it a priority and don't beat yourself up. The attitude you address your goals with makes you succeed.

MariQuilts said...

Wow....that's amazing how specific and detailed you are with your goals. It can be a struggle with a young family. I never did well with the whole goal setting thing. I've taken to picking a word for the year, that seems to suit my temperament better.

As I read about your struggle my first thought is........be kind to yourself. I watch my children juggle their families and careers and it's a challenge to find balance.

Kim Jamieson-Hirst said...

Good to have specific goals, Cheryl and setting deadlines works well for me - I've never missed a deadline yet, but have lots of projects not completed as I didn't have a deadline for them. I also find it helpful to break the goal down into manageable pieces - the "how to eat an elephant" concept. I use Wunderlist to help me set goals and break them down into smaller pieces. It's also a great place to jot down ideas I have that I want to explore in the future. Of course having a husband who "reminds" me of what I need to do helps as well. Reward yourself when you reach your goals, no matter how small they seem - helps to keep that motivation going.
Liking the "sell more local classes" idea - something I often think about myself. If only there was the right venue at the right price...
Good luck on achieving your goals this year :)

Charlotta said...

I love the pics of your beautiful dog and the colorful quilt block. I'm glad you have a dog and that he's a part of your plan. You're well on your way. I should include some time to work on training one of my dogs in my schedule, as well. My other dog was adopted from a program where prisoners train shelter dogs, and he's very well trained. Unfortunately, I have to leave my well trained dog locked up when I work with the untrained dog - or the well trained dog gets jealous! So it's hard for me to do. Whenever I take/have time for them, I want to spend it with both of them! Excuses, excuses.

Andrea said...

lots of great advice here....i think you are well on your path to goal completion my friend. My next step is to list my goals and put them on paper for me to see. And also get past the 'fear' notion of setting the goals in motion. I'll keep you in check ;-)

Anonymous said...

My dog's name was Roo too;)

I keep my list in my head. Teaching locally in my life makes more sense for my family, and has been more profitable when I really looked at the time I was spending planning and traveling. I keep it to three engagements in the spring and three in the fall.

It took awhile to stamp out an effective marketing strategy when it came to shops.

Leanne said...

I'm sorry this process was so challenging. Having balanced a very busy professional career with raising kids and making time for a hobby and fun, I would encourage you to stay optimistic at all times and to be kind to yourself too. Your goals sound good to me.