As I reflect on 2017 my mind drifts from great trips to awesome hikes to other fun adventures and even some personal growth. My first full year was pretty darn good, all things considered. But what about those 2017 goals I set? Yeah… about that… I set six goals, and only 1 was successfully complete. Why didn’t I meet these goals? They were not particularly aggressive, but there were six of them, and I think I was overly ambitious in the breath of my goals. As I was thinking about my 2017 goals, and how I can be more realistic in 2018, I thought about an article I read a while back about Warren Buffet and his private pilot, Mike Flint. Part of Warren’s counseling of Mike involved determining career goals, but I believe that this process, and more importantly the philosophy, can be extrapolated into any goal setting venture. The process is as follows:
- Make a list of 25 things you want to accomplish over a specific timeframe. (In the article the pilot discusses 5 years. This can be applied to a timeframe of 1 week, 1 month, 1 year, or any other timeframe.)
- Circle the top five most important things you want to achieve.
- Focus on doing those five things. And don’t do ANYTHING related to the other 20 until you complete the 5. Those 20 things will be what distracts you from achieving the first five.
It seems rather simple now that it’s laid out, but step 3 is the real kicker. The idea that we are our own worst enemy, and that we will stop ourselves from achieving our own goals. I believe this 100%. I know that I’ve sabotaged some of my own goals in the past. I also know that I’ve set unrealistic, not well thought out goals, or too many goals.
So what does 2018 bring for me? What do I want to focus on? First and foremost, I want to focus on my health. Secondly, I want to expand my horizons both in podcasting and by the books I read. So I set goals around these three things:
- Exercise 4 times a week
- Read 20 books
- Publish 50 podcast episodes
I feel that these goals are high-level enough to allow me some freedoms throughout the year in how I accomplish them. For instance, goal #1 allows me to try any type of exercise or physical activity I want. Kayaking, soccer, and tennis are all on my radar for this year.
I’ll report back this time next year on how 2018 went. In the meantime, check out the article from about Warren Buffet and Mike Flint – it’s worth the read.