Have you ever noticed that as you get older, time seems to speed up? When I was a kid, a year seemed like forever. Now, not so much. We’re more than halfway through 2017. I know, it seems like we just celebrated New Year’s, and now we’re looking at the 4th of July in the rearview mirror.
It’s time to check in on your goals for 2017. You know, the ones you ambitiously recorded and vowed to achieve this year. They’re probably sitting in the top drawer of your desk collecting dust. Pull out the paper and blow away the dust. And if you didn’t write down your 2017 goals, do it now. You need to commit them to writing. It just helps make them real. Do you remember what you set out to accomplish this year?
Now, review the list you prepared back in January (or moments ago). Have you achieved any of the goals you set for this year? If so, cross them off the list. That’s always a good feeling—the sense of accomplishment as you reach the benchmarks you set for yourself. How many goals do you have left to reach? If you’re like me, the answer is plenty. We need to pick up the pace.
At this time of year, I’m reminded of the Robert Frost poem “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening.” The last three lines of the poem remind me of how much I have left to accomplish before we wrap up 2017. Frost writes, “But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep, and miles to go before I sleep.” That’s the way I feel right now. I have promises to keep and miles to go, even if those promises are only ones made to myself. There’s so much more I need to do to accomplish my goals.
So we’ve reviewed our goals and assessed our progress or lack thereof. What’s next? It’s time to rethink your action plan for achieving your goals. Remember that when you came up with your 2017 goals, you had a year to accomplish them. Now you have a little over five months, and the clock is ticking.
Have you made steady progress on your goals so that they’re within reach this year? Even if you’re not halfway to your goals, is there time to catch up? What do you need to do to achieve what you set out to do when the year began? It’s likely time to make some field adjustments to get back on track to achieve your goals before the year’s end. Reconsider how you’re going to achieve your goals, and adjust your plan accordingly.
Now, with your goals fresh in your mind again and a revised plan of attack, DO NOT put them back in your desk drawer. Keep them right there on top of your desk where they are visible. Don’t let them get buried under the rest of the papers on your desk—keep them right on top. Better yet, hang them up where you will see them every day, or tape them to your computer where you can’t miss them. You don’t want to lose sight of your goals. They need to be top of mind daily.
And don’t be discouraged. You still have plenty of time to pursue the things you set out to do, but you can’t delay any longer. Be diligent, put your head down, and get to work. You can still meet your goals. Come out of your summer vacation with renewed energy and enthusiasm, and use that to pursue your goals with passion. Good luck!