A new year is almost upon us. For many people, it’s a time to reflect on the past year, make a new start and set some new goals for the upcoming year.
I have learned from past experience to keep the following things in mind anytime I set goals:
1. Be specific. It’s easy to make general goals, such as “live a healthier lifestyle” or “be more productive,” and it is helpful to keep these general directions in mind, but it’s more difficult to be accountable to yourself unless you have specific,. clearly-defined goals that you can achieve on a weekly or daily basis.
2. Don’t spread yourself too thin. It’s great to set ambitious goals! But if you set too many goals for yourself, it’s easy to get overwhelmed or discouraged when you hit roadblocks. A good strategy is to break up an ambitious, challenging goal into a series smaller goals. As you find success with these smaller goals, it provides a sense of accomplishment that propels you towards your larger goals.
MindMaple is a perfect tool for brainstorming and organizing your ideas for the new year.
Here’s an example mind map I made using MindMaple to illustrate a possible brainstorming session (these aren’t necessarily my goals; I tried to imagine goals that many people can relate to).
There are a lot of goals on this map, probably more than the average person would want to tackle in a single year. So I used MindMaple’s Icon Marker feature to mark priority goals with an exclamation point, such as financial goals and health goals. Since finance is a priority for this individual, I also used a “coin stack” marker to indicate goals that might be expensive and therefore in conflict with the primary goal of financial responsibility. I also used the a Relationship feature to indicate related goals, which led me to note the connections between certain goals.
After brainstorming and focusing on a few specific goals, I made a more condensed mind map with specific goals. MindMaple’s Task Information features and Completion markers would be great to use to keep track of goal progress throughout the year.
Don’t forget about the original brainstorming map! You can continue updating it if you come up with new goals during the year, and it could be a great source of inspiration several months down the road.
Happy New Year! And good luck with your goals and resolutions.