As a single adult, you’ve probably set lots of goals around your love life that you wanted to accomplish in life.
We have work and career goals. We have relationship goals. We have personal goals that we want to accomplish to improve our lives, our health, and our family. You may be want a husband, wife, boyfriend or just more dates to have fun.
While it’s great to have goals, having them isn’t nearly enough. You actually have to start taking steps to achieve them.
And that means you have to be accountable to yourself.
Not sure how to do that? Here are seven ways to hold yourself accountable and crush your goals.
1. Create Your Own Mission Statement
Before you can start working towards your goals, you’ll need to define them. Create a personal mission statement, identify what your specific goals are, and start thinking about how to achieve them.
For example, maybe your mission is to lose 20 pounds by eating healthier and working out. Maybe it’s to work a few more hours per week and grow your business. Maybe your goal is to get a new job by networking, applying, and interviewing for new positions.
Regardless of what your goal is, define it, write it down on paper, and read it over and over again. It will be easier to hold yourself accountable when you can look at your mission statement in print!
2. Make a To-Do List
The best way to tackle big goals is to break them down into smaller goals.
Micro-goals are easier to meet than large ones, so make a to-do list and jot down every small step you need to take to meet your overarching mission.
Write down everything you need to do. Some people find it helpful to make daily lists, while others prefer weekly or monthly to-do lists. As you finish each task, cross it off so you can actually see that you’re one step closer to your end game.
Hang a chalkboard or whiteboard over your desk, get a large calendar to write to-do’s on, or download a list-making app on your smartphone. Find the method that works best for you and make creating and checking off to-do lists a part of your regular routine.
3. Tackle One Goal At a Time
No matter what your mission is, you’ll never be able to change or fix your entire life in one day. Being accountable means also being realistic about what you can accomplish in a day or in a week.
Seeing a long list of to-do’s can be overwhelming for some people, so start small and work on one micro goal at a time. Stay focused and see one task through before you move onto the next.
Forget trying to multi-task and focus on accomplishing one small thing at a time.
4. Review Your Own Performance
Holding yourself accountable requires you to be honest with yourself. And one way to monitor your progress in an honest manner is to review your own performance at the end of the day or the end of the week.
Review your to-do lists to make sure you’re on track to meeting your goals. If there are mini-goals you failed to meet, ask yourself why. Once you know why you didn’t hit your target, come up with an action plan to make it easier to meet your goals tomorrow or next week.
5. Find Ways to Improve Upon Your Weaknesses
The whole point of a performance review is to determine where you’re falling short and figure out ways to improve your performance. But identifying your own weaknesses can be tricky especially in dating.
Take a step back and try to view your personal performance from an outsider’s perspective. Did you not meet your goals because of procrastination? A lack of productivity? Poor time management skills?
Whatever your weaknesses are, create a plan to improve on them.
6. Ask For Feedback
Romantic goals can be tricky so ask for some feedback. You can find a coach, or a friend and ask what areas you’re shining in and where you might be lacking. Feedback is an invaluable tool if you want to ensure you’re moving in the right direction.
When you receive positive feedback, you can pat yourself on the back and rest assured you’re doing something right. When you receive negative feedback, you’ll need to buckle down and start working harder! As for personal goals, ask for feedback from a trusted friend, relative, or loved one. Sometimes, having someone who will be honest with you is all you need to propel yourself forward and reach that goal.
7. Reward Yourself
As you meet milestones, reward yourself for a job well done! This is a great way to stick to your to-do list and stay motivated to accomplish those mini-goals.
How you reward yourself is entirely up to you.
Rewards can be small, such as having a yummy snack, enjoying a glass of wine at the end of the day, or taking a 20-minute power nap. Rewards can be big, such as a day off from work or a fancy dinner at your favorite restaurant.
And when you crush a big goal, by all means, make the reward a huge one! Plan a weekend away with friends or splurge on an expensive new pair of shoes.
The more rewards you allow yourself to enjoy, the more you’ll want to crush that next goal on your list!
If you’re ready to hold yourself accountable and start crushing your goals, here’s what you need to do:
- Create a clear mission statement that defines your biggest goal(s).
- Make a to-do list of every step you need to take to reach that main goal.
- Break big goals into small ones and work on one at a time.
- Review your own performance on a regular basis.
- Identify your weaknesses and figure out how to improve upon them.
- Ask for feedback.
- Reward yourself as you make progress.
Once you learn how to hold yourself accountable, meeting your goals and exceeding your own expectations will become second nature. And that alone just might encourage you to create a whole new list of goals to work on!
Caitlin Sinclair is a senior marketing manager who works with Entrada to provide affordable housing to San Diego residents on a daily basis.