Today, I’m thinking about goals. Big and small. This morning, I awoke at 6am, sat down with my coffee and my trusty notebook, and before I knew it, I had three pages full of inspiring ideas (each accompanied by incredibly daunting tasks). I stared at it for about an hour before I started writing this post. Trying to decide which goals were a priority, which could be put on the back burner, and what I needed to do today to improve my business and my blog.
And I came up with three things.
There are a million little goals I set for myself at any given time. And you know what? I fail at a lot of them. Daily. I realized that a lot of the goals I set for myself are things I want to improve upon in my daily routine. And that’s kind of setting myself up for failure am I right?
We all want to improve, we all want to reach that non existent level of perfection.
If you’re like me, you spend your evenings silently forgiving yourself for the dozens of things you didn’t get done today. Then you forgive yourself for setting un-realistic expectations, and say, “Tomorrow I’ll only put 40 things on my to-do list,”. Sigh contentedly thinking “Yeah, tomorrow will be a better day. I got this.” Then you doze into a restless sleep, wake up, and do it all over again.
Well you know what? You do got this. You’ve just got the process wrong.
As creatives, we tend to push ourselves a lot. Forgetting that the creative process is an invisibly draining one. It seems totally possible when you wake up that you will write four blog posts today. But by the time you’ve poured your brilliance into one, you feel defeated and like you want a sandwich.
“Why can’t I just do more?” You ask, stuffing your face with sandwich, thinking, “Oh, this sandwich is really good, I should write a blog post about it!”
Instead of feeling like a failure today, I want you to feel like you can accomplish whatever it is you set out to do.
Because I know you can.
And I’ve created this pretty little checklist to keep your creative brain in check. Get to this list every morning, before ideas run away from you and you’ve forgotten what your middle name is. Take a deep breath, think of three (doable!) things you can do today- and everyday for the next month.
Write them down, and then do them.
Check them off.
Sigh in relief, and stop forgiving yourself. Because you’ve got this.
What This List Is, And What This List Isn’t
This list is:
- A way for you to form realistic goals for improving any area of your life. It can be as simple as “Saying I love you” whenever you hang up the phone. Anything you want to improve upon daily can go on this list- doesn’t have to be business or blog related.
- A resource for keeping your goals realistic and doable to avoid burnout
- A daily reminder of what you can do
- A replacement of waiting and wishing that you exercised more, read more, learned more, did more
- A list of 3 things you’re not okay with not doing every day.
- A visual aid to get your daily routine out of wishful thinking mode, and into a reality that works for you
This list isn’t
- A to-do list – you’ll probably still need one (or four) of those if you’re anything like me. This is a list for little habits that you want to change, or start forming in your everyday routine. It’s a simple way to look your daily routine in the eye and see where you have room for improvement.
- Going to drastically change your routine if you don’t give yourself any wiggle room. If you want to check of that box- then all you have to do are those three things! So keep them simple and doable, but remember that one little change you make today will help you move forward- even if you’re not feeling it. (The hardest one for me is exercise- that’s why I left out the word exercise, and replaced it with something active. As long as I’m not on the couch all day, and can log 20 minutes of activity, I’m good.)
- Going to work unless you do. (We’ve all seen that Pinterest quote a million times am I right?)
- Simple or easy. Changing your routine is one of the hardest things to get motivated to do. A piece of paper isn’t going to change your state of mind, that’s all up to you. Just because there are only three things on your list, doesn’t mean that it’s easy, so don’t be fooled and don’t get discouraged. Remember: You got this.
My 3 Daily Habits:
- Comment on 5+ blogs – As a community builder, I want to reach out to more blogs, so this one is kind of a no-brainer for me. However, it’s been on my to-do list everyday, and I haven’t seemed to cross it off yet. Moving it to a checklist that is top priority will help me get it done.
- Do something active for at least 20 minutes per day – I hate exercise and I love cheeseburgers. Not a good combination. So this one is pretty necessary, but will be the biggest challenge for me to complete everyday. I am the queen of excuses, but notice this checklist doesn’t have a spot for excuses? Yeah, that was intentional.
- Learn something new about web design – There is always something new to learn, and it can be as simple as reading a five minute tutorial, or as complicated as watching an hour long video. I left it pretty open ended so as long as I learn something, I’m checking off that box and changing my routine for the better. Instead of spending an hour on Twitter, I’ll pop over to one of my favorite tutorial websites and put my brain to work.
What do you want to change in your daily routine? Download the worksheet, and tell me in the comments below!