You don’t need to wait until New Years to start on a new goal. And it’s totally ok if you choose an easy goal. After all, easy goals lay the groundwork for the more challenging ones. And, not all goals need to take months or years to accomplish. Some can be done in a matter of days. And those easy goals can quickly help you gain momentum towards something more significant.
Easy goals don’t always start out easy
In August last year, I set myself a goal of drinking one litre of water a day. Easy, right? Wrong. You may be wondering why I set such a small amount as my goal considering most recommend drinking at least two litres of water per day. I have struggled for most of my life to drink enough fluids. In my teens and into my 20’s, I would often go the whole day on about half a litre of water, which is certainly not enough. It might explain why that when I hit 25, I learned I could no longer eat what I wanted without it affecting my weight. I think it’s safe to say that it also contributed to my almost always chapped lips.
So back to last August, I decided to start setting some monthly goals for myself. One of which was to drink more water. Now, drink more water isn’t exactly a good choice for a goal, it needed to be specific. So I decided that one litre of water seemed achievable given my track record. And this was one litre of water on top of anything else I had to drink, like coffee, tea, juice or even wine.
I’d love to be able to sit here and say I effortlessly hit my one-litre goal every day from the day I set it. But that’s not the way it happened. It took me about four to five months to start hitting that goal. If I messed up, it would take a few days for me to get back on track. And at most I’d get about a week of one litre a day and then just stop.
Since January, I have been pretty consistent with only one or two days per month where I don’t hit my mark. All it took was a little preparation on my part and a willingness to keep going.
Easy goals help you build momentum
And now that I know I can achieve one goal, it’s time to add another into the mix and build from here. And knowing that I have one goal down pat, I know I can do the next thing I set my mind to. Now that I have that first goal down pat, my next goal is something that could also be considered easy. I want to start consistently exercising each week, so I’m aiming for three times a week.
Easy goals can turn into habits
My goal of drinking one litre of water a day started because I wanted to get in the habit of drinking more water. And starting with simple goals like this can help build a habit out of absolutely nothing. Now that you’ve built up some momentum, it just keeps growing. I can easily add on another habit or goal knowing that I’ve been successful with the first one.
Easy goals teach you patience
Being patient while trying to achieve your goals can be tough. But patience and persistence will pay off in the long run. Being patient to complete a straightforward goal will be so rewarding when you are struggling to achieve your big goals.
Easy goals teach you what you want
It takes a bit of practice to choose goals that suit your needs. And sometimes you’ll find that the timing isn’t right or a goal is no longer a good fit for your stage of life. You might think you want to walk 10,000 steps per day. But if you work from home and don’t need to walk far to the fridge or bathroom, it might not be realistic. So walking 10,000 steps might not be a good goal for you. Just like my drink one litre of water example, you might decide that you want to drink two litres of water per day. But you also drink four cups of coffee throughout the day and have a wine or two with dinner. You are going to be going to the bathroom as often as a pregnant woman!
Some easy goals you could start working towards or complete today:
- Drink one litre of water per day
- Update your LinkedIn profile
- Clean out your inbox by filing, deleting and unsubscribing
- Go to the dentist/optometrist/doctor
- Exercise twice a week
- Take a multivitamin every day
- Read a set number of books per year
- 10,000 steps per day
- Leave your phone in another room while you sleep
- Limit your screen time
- Get out of bed the first time your alarm goes off
- Set yourself a bedtime
- Save a set amount of money over a year
- Do 10 minutes of tidying each night
Goals can be achieved when you take steps each day to reach them. Bigger goals might need to be broken down into smaller steps, which helps prevent you from getting overwhelmed. You can accomplish small goals in no time. You don’t need to wait until the new year to start working towards something.