Struggling with the juggling act between professional and personal goals? Whether you find it difficult to tune out the daily noise so you can focus on what you need to do, or unable to take care of yourself because you’re engrossed in the rat race, striking a comfortable balance is not easy. Plus, sometimes the sheer size of your goals, simply scares the hell out of you! Many of us go through exactly this; trying to keep things balanced between the goals we want to achieve personally and our professional goals.
So how does one work through this to make sure that you’re achieving your goals in all areas of your life? Let’s go through the possibilities:
1. Write. It. Down.
We’re in a time where most people don’t do just one thing, so how does one keep track of all they want to do? It’s as easy as beginning with a list. Note everything you’re busy with and all you want for the future. This can range from any professional goals you have – getting a promotion or working on a large, meaningful project – to personal, financial and lifestyle goals. Move these from that part of your mind that makes them seem unattainable to something tangible – paper. The act of simply putting thoughts to paper allows you to see them, note which are the priorities and then acknowledge them as doable.
2. Look into the specifics of each goal.
Do you know why so many time-management experts will tell you to turn big goals into smaller ones? Because it works. It may sound corny it really does make them a little easier to swallow. Think it through – what’s the big idea and what individual steps do you need to take to get there? Looking to save a large amount of money? Aim to save a smaller amount each month, week or even day and see how much easier it becomes to get there. Every goal can be broken down into something you can tackle each day.
3. Create positive habits.
Yup, this is that kind of list. All the positive belief in yourself and acknowledging the ambitions can’t replace putting in the actual work. If you’re aware of the fact that you’re a procrastinator, put a plan in place to combat that. Distracted easily? Work on cutting out the noise practically. What is it that’s going to help you when you feel stressed, when you feel overwhelmed? Who is supporting you on your journey and how will you make sure you ask them for help when you need it? How are you going to be the best communicator you can be on the path to where you want to go? Be honest when creating the habits you need to aid yourself to get to where you need – only you’ll know what you need.
4. Are you flexible?
While many people thrive working in structured ways, be aware of whether this works for you or not. Allow yourself a break from the rigid nature that can at times overwhelm you when you’re trying to find structure. Recognise the space, time and understanding you need from yourself when you encounter a hurdle, a plan doesn’t go the way you had hoped or even when you may disappoint yourself.
You may not get everything you want to when you want it but do welcome happiness into your life when things do go right. Celebrating even the tiniest of victories can open up the space you may need in your life for more good news to join. Turn the old saying, ‘misery loves company’ to ‘victory begets positivity’.
HANNA GIRLING, wife, mother, business owner, coach, sport enthusiast and forever an optimist.