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As busy professional women, goal setting can seem like an impossible task. However, it’s so worth it to carve out some time for yourself to think about the things that will eventually improve your quality of life.

I get it, it’s so easy to get caught up in the day-to-day routine of life- to the point that you just don’t feel like goal setting is a necessary thing to do. 

Let me be the first to tell you if no one else has… goal setting is essential. Especially for busy professional women who may not realize how quickly life passes.

My hack for fitting in more “me time” is waking up at 5am every morning. You’d be surprised at how much you can get done before the sun comes up. That quiet time is unbeatable. 

You may be wondering how to get started, or what goal setting even means. Goal setting is basically the process of identifying the ideal future outcome of something you’d like to achieve. 

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Below are 10 goal setting hacks to help you get started. 

1. Imagine your life in the next 5 years.

If you could picture your future self- what would she look like? This step is really simple as I’m sure it’s something we all naturally do. The next time you’re imagining your future self, really pay attention to the setting and the feelings you have around it. Is it good, bad, or boring? Can you even see it?

Start here and everything else will sort of fall into place. 

2. Think about what you love to do the most.

What’s something you could do every day that you would do without being paid for it? I know… who wants to do anything for free- but seriously, for the purpose of the exercise just think about something that brings you joy and try to expound on that.

Think about what your passions are and write them down.

3. Gain clarity about the lifestyle you want to live. 

Okay, this step is where you start bringing 1 and 2 together. When you think about lifestyle, think about your everyday way of doing things. How you move, who your friends are, the car you drive, where you live. Are you married or single? Do you have or want kids?

Think about where you are spiritually and financially. Think about what your dream occupation is and if you currently have the skills to make it a reality. Do you have a simple slow life or is it fast and luxurious? Maybe a mix of both.

4. Share your thoughts with your friends.

Here’s the scary part, when you have to be vulnerable and start speaking things into existence. If you have a hard time setting goals and achieving them, tell your friends.

Provided that you have good friends who understand you and want the best for you, they will for sure give you constant reminders of what you claim you want. 

My friends do this constantly… and honestly it’s quite annoying, but thank God for them. It puts me in the position to either re-evaluate my ideas or to make good on what was said.

Because clearly, I’m not lazy or a liar, and neither are you…. So there’s that. Tell your friends, they will keep you accountable. 

5. Take a personality quiz.

Takin a personality quiz can help you gain insight into your strengths and weaknesses. Learning more about your personality traits can furher assist in helping you refine your goals. 

goal setting black girl working

6. Attend networking events.

Networking is a great way to expose yourself to different careers and lifestyles. You will likely be inspired by the exchange of information and leave with a different perspective and hopefully new goals. 

That was my experience at the 2022 Women of Project Management Conference. I was so inspired by the speakers and how bold they were to confidently share their experiences.

A new goal of mine after leaving the conference was to improve my public speaking skills by taking advantage of opportunities to speak. 

7. Aim to create SMART goals.

Once you’ve completed steps 1-7, you should be super clear on what your goals are. SMART goals are goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound.

Ensuring your goals are SMART is a great way to be real with yourself and keep things grounded.

There is nothing wrong with grandiose goals, but when you write them down and make them SMART, it’s helps you to visualize what the expectation is.

8. Track your progress.

Without tracking progress it’ll likely never get done. Trust me, something special happens when you’re able to able to measure your progress and see results.

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9. Celebrate your wins no matter how big or small.

Celebrating every win will give you the momentum you need to keep going. It builds confidence and acts as positive reinforcement to keep you on the right track.

10. Keep going, set more goals.

After you’ve accomplished your goals, set more goals. Give yourself something to work towards and look forward too.

There’s nothing more gratifying than seeing an idea come to fruition and knowing that you have control over how things materialize in your life.