• Short, medium and long term (personal) objectives

    Personal, Work • 17 Aug 2020

    Today is Ferragosto! What the hell is Ferragosto? Well… August 15 is the best day of the summer for Italians. If you’ve ever been in Italy during this period, you’ve undoubtedly noticed the “Closed for holidays” signs posted up in nearly every shop window. This is the day for friends and family gatherings, fireworks at the beach, loud music and food coma.

    Unless you are an Expat! Like me. In that case, Ferragosto is a very nostalgic day where you end up working or doing God knows what. Speaking for myself, today I decided to open a giant excel file where I listed down all my (very confused) personal objectives for the upcoming months. Great idea, eh?

    A lot of stuff changed during Corona time: I moved to a new place, I fell in love. I discovered how much I love interior design, how good life is in Haarlem. What I would like, for my future, is to combine these interests with my personal goals, and that’s how I came up with the following list.

    Step 1: divide et impera

    So, it looks like the most effective way to achieve goals in life is to break big goals up into smaller ones. I started by writing down well-established long term goals (to be achieved by the end of 2021) and then I divided them into mid-term objectives (mid-2021) and short term tasks (next quarter).

    Long term goal
    (end 2021)
    Mid term objective
    (mid 2021)
    Short term task
    (next quarter)
    Increase the visibility of my website and diversify contentAdd new topics: interior design and visit HaarlemMore content about UX Writing and Leadership
    Create my own monthly newsletterAnalyze my website subscriber list Take a course on email marketing
    Improve my interiors and create a house that represents meJoin introduction to Interior Design courseCreate a home tour for an online or offline magazine
    Publish a second book, co-writtenPlan the book marketing campaignDefine contents and collaborations
    Publish a written offline guide about HaarlemPlan contents, costs, illustrationsWrite an itinerary on my blog
    Rent a room of my place and become a hostEmpty the room and find a cleaning ladyTake professional photos of my place
    Attract new career opportunitiesAdd a portfolio page to my websiteCreate a PDF portfolio
    Build different streams of incomeAsk my financial advisor to review my balance sheetMonitor income and expenses on excel
    Improve my Dutch, achieve a B1 levelStart having small conversationsTake online classes weekly
    Planning a future together ♥Take a long trip, outside EUMeet friends and family

    For those who know me, none of these goals sound entirely unexpected. These are my interests, my passions. I’m just trying to structure them a bit, make a plan.

    If you are interested in creating a more professional and collaborative roadmap, you can try ProductPlan (it’s free for 14 days). There you can also track the status of your tasks. Here is how it looks:

    I follow a similar process every six months with my team. We set both team and individual objectives, and we review them together.

    Good to know: if the people around you are aware of what you are trying to achieve, they are more likely to help you.

    Step 2: connecting dots

    Steve Jobs taught us that connecting ideas, experiences, and technology is a powerful way of being creative and successful. That’s why I’ve decided to group my goals into themes, and see what comes out of it.

    Content– Increase the visibility of my website and diversify content
    – Create my own monthly newsletter
    Design– Improve my interiors and create a house that represents me
    – Publish a second book, co-written
    Travel– Publish a written offline guide about Haarlem
    – Rent a room of my place and become a host
    Career– Attract new career opportunities
    – Build different streams of income
    Life– Improve my Dutch, achieve a B1 level
    – Planning a future together

    I have now 5 macro categories, my focus area. I can use them also as categories in my blog, to structure an editorial calendar based on my interests.

    Another tool you can try to group ideas is FunRetro. I use it at work to organize workshops and brainstorming with my team (you can have up to 3 boards for free). It’s useful when I need to collect ideas from different people and vote. Here is how it looks:

    Step 3: Prioritization

    When goals are big, it’s difficult to achieve them all. You need focus and clarity. I decided to prioritize mine using a matrice valuecomplexity. If you want to be even more precise, you can also estimate the hours, costs, people involved, and risks of each project.

    High value– Attract new career opportunities
    – Increase the visibility of my website and diversify content
    – Planning a future together
    – Build different streams of income
    – Publish a second book, co-written
    – Improve my Dutch, achieve a B1 level
    Low value– Create my own monthly newsletter
    – Improve my interiors and create a house that represents me
    – Publish a written offline guide about Haarlem
    – Rent a room of my place and become a host
    Low complexityHigh complexity

    This is one of the most intuitive and straightforward methods for prioritizing your objectives. It allows you to define easy wins and strategic initiatives, as well as what to deprioritize or revisit later.

    reforge.com

    Step 4: Sharing is caring

    Sharing your goals in life with others is an important success factor. Why?

    • To commit
    • To clear your mind
    • To measure progress
    • To find motivation
    • To connect with others

    Also, if people are aware of your goals, they are more likely gonna help you to succeed. Maybe that’s why I wrote it, after all. I am the queen of procrastination, and I have been carrying some of these goals for too long.

    But hey, do I have to create my goal as well now?

    No, you don’t have to. Only if you want, if you think is useful, if it’s the right moment to do so. If you are tired or a little stressed, remember that feeling good is always our primary goal! Take time, say no, delegate.

    Take care ♥

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