Planning calendarAnyone who has ever made a resolution knows that the New Year is the perfect time to start fresh and to enact all of the upgrades you have been meaning to incorporate into your life. Fortunately, this feeling of fresh starts and new beginnings doesn’t only apply to dreaded personal goals like fitness and healthy eating. The New Year is also a great time to review goals for the upcoming year, set new ones, and most importantly, set up plans and strategies for achieving them.

Think about what you really want to achieve. Do you have some huge goals for the year that you would like to work toward? Are there a couple major goals you have in mind? Are you already pretty happy with how things are going but you want to make sure to stay on track and keep your progress consistent throughout the upcoming year? Write down the goals whatever they are, no matter how large or small.

Start with a calendar. I like some people are fans of paper calendars, some like to have everything on the computer, some like both—whatever works best for you, set up a brand new calendar and mark down all important dates and large goals and deadlines for the year. I strongly recommend that even if you use a paper calendar or one saved on your computer, you also use one that is in the cloud for easy updates. Google calendars are great for this, you can log into them from any computer and sync them with your phone so that no matter where you are or what you’re doing you can add in appointments and updates on the go with no chance of getting stuck without access to your calendar and trying to remember everything you planned for the day when you get home or back to your computer.

Break it down into reasonable chunks. Now that you have major goals outlined and filled into certain dates throughout the year, think about what you need to get you there in time to fulfill them by those dates. I like to break it down by month- what needs to happen each month to make sure that you will fulfill your goals for the year? These can be shorter term goals that either will help you eventually achieve the larger goals in time, or can be completely unrelated but still help your business grow.

Stay on track. I’ve done a post in the past about how to use lists to stay organized and keep on track with tasks and to dos. Lists work hand in hand with the calendar you already have started, as a way to further break down the steps to achieving your goals. You can have a monthly list and daily lists of what you need to get done in order to fulfill your monthly goals and then in turn, your yearly goals.

The most important thing is to really take the time right now to figure out the most important things you want to achieve and the smaller steps you will need to take to get there. With proper planning you will know what is expected and necessary each month, week, day, in order to accomplish everything you want. And then there are no excuses!