Things I Do Daily to Keep Focused on My Goals!

by Krantcents · 20 comments

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I thought I would share some of the things I do daily to stay focused on my goals! About thirty-six (36) years ago, I created my plan to achieve financial independence. I set my goals to reach them in about nine (9) years and I beat it by two (2)! I was laser focused on my goals to the point of having daily tasks and monitoring them weekly/monthly. Life is complicated, but I tried to simplify it so I could achieve my goal. 

My focus was completely on financial independence, but I also had career,  family, physical, public service and pleasure goals. There were additional circumstances that made me think about my particular choice because there were no retirement savings accounts when I started. I did have a profit sharing plan through my employer, but I knew I was not going to be there forever. My goal was always to eventually start a business or do something for myself.

I think it all starts with goals and a plan! Too often, people think that is all they need to achieve their goals. Just setting a goal does not automatically mean you will achieve it. You still need to work at it and monitor your progress. I learned a long time ago that you have to break down your goals into daily tasks in order to achieve them. It reminds me of weight loss programs. A goal of losing twenty-five (25) pounds is not enough to make it happen.

You have to eat less and increase your activity! I know about this personally because I lost thirty-five (35) to forty (40) pounds thirty –five years ago and kept it off. How did I do it? I reduced what I ate by cutting out some of the really bad foods and replaced it with better choices. The number of calories was reduced and my activity level was increased. I weighed myself everyday to monitor my progress. I ate when I was hungry, but stuck with my plan. I lost the weight and learned a lot from the experience.

It all starts with goals and monitoring your progress. I would change my efforts based on the progress and the results prove it was worthwhile. I may attribute it to determination, discipline or whatever, it worked and I thought I would share some of my tricks. My current goals include career, family, financial, physical, public service, pleasure and business goals. I need to perform daily tasks, some direct and other indirect to achieve these goals.

Career

I am near the end of my career, but there are still a few things I need to do to reach my goal of retirement in three or four years. I am looking for a permanent assignment. I perform my job as a Pool Teacher to the best of my ability to get references or Principals helping me find the permanent assignment. In addition, I am learning first hand which schools are better work places for me and making more connections for networking. In addition, I check job postings daily.

Family

No matter how busy I am, I consider family as my number one priority. My wife is always supportive and a great sounding board for new ideas. My children are always important to me. They are successful adults, but they need emotional support or feedback at one time or another. It is also important to make time to see or call them. They routinely call us and I try to push everything aside to be a good listener. I think it is important to spend time with family because it is why I do everything else.

Financial

Although I already achieved financial independence, I still have additional financial goals. I am constantly monitoring my stock portfolio value and real estate investments. I know that I will eventually need to move to a single story residence, but the time frame is unknown. I am always thinking when will the best time to do it? One of my other financial goals is to replace my wife’s seventeen (17) year old car before I retire in three-four years. There are many financial goals or issues , I deal with on a daily basis because I monitor my expenses as I pay my bills.

Physical

As I stated, I lost some weight and kept it off for thirty-five years! I need to eat well and keep up my physical activity. I always exercise on the weekends and vacations, but it is much harder during the week. I try to walk with my wife after dinner for thirty minutes, but that is not always possible. One way to keep up my activity is to walk around the classroom. It satisfies two goals. I maintain my weight and classroom management by walking around the classroom. I helps my physical goals and my career goals.

Public Service

Last summer, I started to volunteer at a nonprofit once a month. Part of my daily routine is looking for opportunities for donations to the nonprofit. It is not something I can do every day, but I am thinking about it. It is the best way to keep the goal actively in front of me. Last year, I was able to volunteer with another nonprofit at school. It made me realize that I wanted to contribute in a different capacity, but you have to try to learn how you like it.

Pleasure

I established pleasure goals this year because I tend to overlook things like time off. I am starting to think about vacations for next summer too. Smaller things like getting together with friends or a weekend a way is important too. My wife is better at planning these things, but I add to the situation too. There are other pleasurable things I do on a daily basis such as reading mysteries, magazines, newspapers, and online articles. I read a lot on a daily basis for pleasure and for my blog. It is funny how it helps me perform better.

Business Goals

I try to save some time every day to think about my business goals for my blog and other interests.  The daily tasks that help me focus on my goals also helps me in my business goals! Reading mysteries or newspapers/periodicals gives me ideas and helps me relax too. I am always working on various goals. I am trying to increase readership by writing better and more controversial articles. Just working on my business goals keeps them in front of me which helps me accomplish more of them.

Final Thoughts

The only way to achieve more in your life is to set a goal and work toward it. Just setting goals is never enough! You have to work on them and monitor your progress too. The most import part of monitoring is to make changes to reach your goals. You may even modify your goals too. It reminds me of game strategy whether it was Monopoly, board or card games, It starts with a goal, then a plan or strategy. Par tof my strategy is a check list which keeps the goals or daily tasks in front of me everyday! Do you have multiple goals or stick with just a single goal?

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{ 20 comments }

Teffany @ Critical Financial December 10, 2013 at 1:38 am

Having a goal and following it will lead you to be a successful person in the future. Right now my goal is to help my family and to prepare for my daughter’s future.

Krantcents December 10, 2013 at 6:50 am

Goals are just recognizing what you think is important and want to accomplish short and long term.

Brian @ Luke1428 December 10, 2013 at 7:44 am

I’ve gone back and forth at various stages of my life with how many goals to work on at once. Sometimes I focused on just one thing and at other times have tried to juggle seven or eight at once. It may depend on the person and what their priorities and abilities are, but I’ve concluded for me that working on no more than 3-5 goals at a time works best. Any less than that and I get bored. Any more than that can be overwhelming and I lose focus on something. Of those, I try to have several short-term goals (6 months or less) and several long term goals.

Krantcents December 10, 2013 at 4:12 pm

I think if you try for too many goals for the smae deadline, you will probably fail. A mix of short term and long term goals is what it takes. For me, I try to convert all goals (short & long term) to daily tasks. It makes much easier to accomplish and easier to monitor your progress.

Money Beagle December 10, 2013 at 9:23 am

I think with you being so goal oriented, you had better have a long list of things to do and goals to accomplish for when you end your career, which I think will ensure you a very happy retirement. I think many people set retirement as the end goal, but if they are task oriented, they’ll find that the lack of having anything to do can be detrimental to actually enjoying that time.

Krantcents December 10, 2013 at 4:15 pm

You definitely have me figured out! I am a little worried that I will not have enough to occupy my time in retirement. Of course, I am more concerned with quality of the projects than quantity. I started some of the things I want to do, but I think I am changing. I definitely want flexibility in my choices. I guess it is a work in progress.

maria@moneyprinciple December 10, 2013 at 2:44 pm

Very well said, Krant. I’d go a step beyond, though and say that for me all begins with a dream. Not a dream like ‘I’ll just wish and not act’ kind of thing but a dream as something I really, really want. Then I zero on it, and…well, after that I do pretty much what you said. Works every time :) .

Krantcents December 10, 2013 at 4:17 pm

I think everything starts with a dream or idea that we can turn into a goal or just keep dreaming. The few times I buy a lottery ticket, I amuse myself by thinking what I would do if I won. It is fun for just a $1 to dream! LOL!!!!!

The First Million is the Hardest December 10, 2013 at 3:13 pm

I usually have a few general goals that I work towards, but overall I’m not huge on setting specific goals to reach. My goals are almost always shorter term goals, as my long term interests tend to change pretty often at this point in my life.

Krantcents December 10, 2013 at 4:19 pm

I use short term goals to help me reach long term goals. I always took huge goals which are usually long term and break them down into daily tasks. The tasks were measured weekly/monthly and compared to short/long term goals.

101 Centavos December 10, 2013 at 6:08 pm

Walking around the classroom, eh? That seems entirely natural, and expected. I’ve been told that my standing behind my desk, while visitors are seated in the guest chairs in front, makes people somewhat nervous. Totally unintended…

Krantcents December 10, 2013 at 8:24 pm

If you walk around, it will make your guests even more nervous. I walk around for a lot of reasons, nervous energy, control and to encourage work.

Untemplater December 11, 2013 at 5:32 pm

I’m like you, I like to have lots of different goals across multiple categories. It helps keep me on my toes. I haven’t done the best job at my goals this year though but at least I’m happy! :)

Krantcents December 11, 2013 at 6:01 pm

Happy trumps a lot of things! I will take happy over more money. It helps that I have a big nest egg though.

Tie the Money Knot December 12, 2013 at 9:53 am

Great stuff here. I now have a similar approach, in that I start with longer-term goals, and break them down to shorter-term time frames. To the point of having weekly goals – not just a to-do list of random things, but specific actions that are intended to help reach the bigger goals.

Also, I totally agree that goals aren’t enough. They’re a great start, and along with motivation they are necessary. However, it’s actually taking action and having discipline that are the hard parts that need to be done.

Krantcents December 12, 2013 at 10:13 am

There is just one last thing to do and that is to breakdown the weekly goals into daily tasks. By completing or performing daily tasks, the outcome is almost guaranteed.

Barbara Friedberg December 15, 2013 at 1:57 pm

I’ve always enjoyed goal setting. It relaxes me and gives me a feeling of control (true or not??? I think it’s true). Most of the time, when I set a goal, I eventually reach it.

Krantcents December 15, 2013 at 5:03 pm

I agree that by setting goals, you taking control. I get a feeling of accomplishment when I achieve it too.

SuburbanFinance December 16, 2013 at 8:23 pm

I’m a big fan of goal setting but goals are useless if you don’t make steps toward them. When I’m inspired it really helps.

Krantcents December 16, 2013 at 8:38 pm

In most instances, I use the goal as the motivation! It helps if you concentrate on the daily task.

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