May action plan a review

Love from Lisa action plan - a review

Image: Unsplash

This year I’ve started to set two types of goals, yearly goals using one little word, and monthly goals using a monthly action plan.

The first step in the process of setting my monthly goals is to identify an area of my life that I want to work on for the month. I then set objectives for the identified area, then review if the objectives were met, hence determining whether or not my monthly goal was achieved.

In May my goal was to establish routines. Here’s the action plan I set in place to achieve this.

May goal – Establish routines

Objective 1
Blog more during the week.

How
Get up at 6am weekdays and work on post content.

Achieved?
Half achieved. I only did this for two weeks, but quickly discovered that I really enjoyed getting up early. Not only was it beneficial in getting posts completed, but it was a great way to ease into the day. Once I start my new job next month, this will be something that I actually do every day.

Objective 2
Exercise 4 times a week.

How
Go to the gym three times a week, and do a yoga dvd at home once a week.

Achieved?
Half achieved. I joined a gym and bought a yoga DVD. I went to the gym only twice a week, and have yet to use the yoga DVD. This is work in progress.

Objective 3
Establish a grocery shopping night.

How
Dedicate Thursdays to grocery shopping.

Achieved?
Half achieved. I only go grocery shopping once a week, but the day has varied. This is another work in progress.

Was my May action plan achieved?
No, I feel like May was a very bad goal achievement month for me. I’m not sure if it was because I was lacking motivation for life in May, or because once I set these goals I never looked at them again.

If you’d like inspiration on goal setting, or would like to see my past action plans, then please visit my Goal setting Pinterest board.

If you’d like to learn more about one little word please visit my One little word – olw Pinterest board.

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April action plan a review

Love from Lisa action plan - a review

Image: Unsplash

Goal setting is a great way to prioritise time for the things in life that truly matter to you.

I set two types of goals, which are yearly goals using one little word, and monthly goals using a monthly action plan.

My monthly action plan outlines my goal for the month, and what objectives I would like to achieve for the goal.

Last month my goal was on my health, this month my goal is focusing on this very blog.

Here’s my monthly action plan outlining what my objectives were to do this, and if they were achieved.

April focus – The Creative Canvass

Objective 1 – write a three month post schedule

Achieved! I now have a three month post schedule with two posts planned per week until the end of July. I achieved by scheduling current monthly series, then filling the gaps with ideas I’ve already started, and then new series ideas, which will make their appearances very soon.

Objective 2 – pick a fight

Achieved! Picking a fight for your blog is something I learnt at a ProBlogger event I attended in March. Effectively this means giving your blog a purpose, something to fight for, something to get others to rally around.

After much thought I’ve decided that my fight is:

“to provide you with inspiration on how lists, plans, goals, and organisational tools can help you make time for the things in life that truly matter to you”

Objective 3 – update the about page

Achieved! Once my fight was chosen my about page was updated to reflect it.

Objective 4 – work on standard keywords

Achieved! I have a list of standard keywords that I use for all of my posts. I then add post specific keywords to the end of this list. Once my blog’s mission was established I added mission specific keywords to my standard list. I’m now in the process of updating past posts with these new keywords.

Was my April action plan put into place?

I feel like it was. Each objective that I had for April was achieved. I feel like I’ve given this blog some much needed love and attention, but it still needs a bit more.

If you’d like some inspiration on goal setting, or what my past action plans have been, then please visit my goal setting Pinterest board.

If you’d like to learn more about one little word please visit my one little word – olw Pinterest board.

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March action plan a review

Love from Lisa action plan - a review

Image: Unsplash

Setting goals is something that I do quite often. However, what I don’t do very often is review how well I’m going with them.

For the past two years I’ve set yearly goals using one little word. This year my one little word is action.

One of my action goals is to become more positive. In order to achieve this I’ve started setting monthly goals, in addition to my yearly goals, using a Happiness Journal from Kikki.K.

So this means that I now have two sets of goals. One set that last the entire year, the other that last only for a month.

To make sure that I’m working on achieving my goals, I’ve decided to start this new monthly series. This series will outline my action plan / goals from the previous month, and will then detail how well I’m tracking with them.

So here goes, here’s what my action plan was for March and how I went with it.

ACTION – YEARLY GOALS

Become more productive – make daily action plans and stick to them
I made heaps of daily action plans but didn’t stick to them. I blame this on having unlimited free time, which made me lazy as I was able to put things off until tomorrow. However, this free time has now come to an end, so hopefully next month I will have progressed better with this goal.

Stop talking about food and exercise – track these every day in My Fitness Pal
I feel like I only half accomplished this goal. I tracked my food and exercise but still complained to my sister about the days I ate too much chocolate!

Have more fun – plan things to do on Sundays
Last Sunday Nick and I went on a picnic. However, I really need to work on this more.

Be more positive – stop going to the negatives, think of the positives instead
This month I’ve tried to be more positive about all the spare time I’ve had. However, I do feel that I need to work on this more.

Be decisive – make a decision, stop thinking about it, move onto the next thing
I still need to work on this!

HEALTH – MONTHLY GOALS

My monthly goals for March focussed on health.

Exercise 3 days a week
DONE

Eat 1 piece of fruit a day
DONE

Drink a full bottle of water – before breakfast, lunch, and dinner
I really wanted to accomplish this but found myself drinking more coffee than water.

Snack wisely
I created a healthy snacks and tips Pinterest board, but didn’t make better snack decisions. I need to improve this.

I feel like March wasn’t very productive in terms of working on my yearly and monthly goals. It was a lazy month. However, now that I’m writing about my goals in a public forum I feel like maybe I’ll be better at achieving them.

If you’d like to see the resources I used to set my one little word, then please visit my one little word – olw or goal setting Pinterest boards.

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Happiness Journal #1 March 2015

The Creative Canvass #100HappyDays

In the past I’ve written about my thoughts on happiness, and how I feel that we place way too much emphasis on this feeling. There are so many different feelings and elements that determine how happy or successful you feel, and happiness is just one of them.

Whilst being happy is important, we need to acknowledge that there will be days, or periods of time where we’re not entirely happy. Times where other feelings come into play, and that’s totally okay, and great to acknowledge.

In order to explore the level of influence happiness has on my life, I purchased a Happiness Journal from Kikki.K.

The idea behind this journal is to create goals surrounding an area of your life each month for a year, which should assist you in having a more positive outlook on life. This works really well for me as being more positive is a massive part of my one little word for this year.

Once you decide on an area you want to focus on you set objectives for it, make a plan to achieve them, and then evaluate how well you did.

Seeing as this is a monthly activity, I’ve decided to turn it into a new series for this blog. In this series I will detail the area that I have decided to focus on for the month, and then I will write a follow up on how I went at the start of the next month.

The first area I will be focusing on for my Happiness Journal is health, which also ties in really well with my one little word for this year.

My objectives for improving my health this month are:

Objective 1

Exercise a minimum of 3 days a week.

How – walk in the morning before doing anything else.

Objective 2

Eat at least one piece of fruit a day.

How – add it to my breakfast.

Objective 3

Stop overthinking food choices.

How – log calories daily in the My Fitness Pal app.

Objective 4

Drink more water.

How – drink a full bottle before breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Objective 5

Snack wisely.

How – create a healthy snacks and tips Pinterest board and stock up on them.

So here goes, stay tuned for an update soon!

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One little word – changing my focus for 2015

Love from Lisa one little word changing my focus for 2015

Image: Unsplash

Last year I decided that setting New Year’s Resolutions wasn’t working for me. So instead I decided to set one little word to guide my year, and that word was Create.

I was really happy with the outcome of doing this, so decided to do it again this year, and this year my one little word was focus.

Choosing one little word to guide your year sets the tone for how you want to live your life. The word you choose infuses itself into your life, it becomes part of who you are, and how you respond to what life throws your way.

It’s now only three months into the New Year, but already I feel like focus isn’t working for me. I don’t feel motivated by it, so I’ve decided to change it.

After redoing the exercises I did to choose focus in Martine Holston’s How To Define Your Year Workbook, I’m excited to say that my one little word for 2015 is now action.

I feel like action is a word that means no stuffing around. It’s a word I can say to myself when I need to just get up and do something. It’s about not sitting back and letting crap take over. And it’s about doing whatever I need to do to feel more productive, have more fun, appreciate what I have, and see the positives in any situation.

It’s about actively contributing to my life, and having a better outlook on it.

This is how I intend action to work for me this year:

ACTION

An act that one consciously wills, and that is characterised by physical or mental activity

Exerting power or force

Something done or performed

Three goals that will enable me to integrate action into my life this year are:

1. Become more productive. I will be making daily action plans and sticking to them so I feel like I’m achieving things, instead of wasting my time. A big part of my productivity efforts this year will be directed towards growing this blog’s content.

2. Stop talking about food and exercise. This self-criticism has been going on for way too long. It not only irritates me, but also irritates those around me. To achieve this goal I will be tracking my food intake and exercise in My Fitness Pal for the entire year. Whenever I have a day where I consume too many calories I will remind myself that some days you eat more than others. I need to remember that life is meant to be enjoyed, and that I’m fortunate that my body is healthy.

3. Have more fun. I need to take a more active approach in the time I spend with Nick and plan fun things to do. I’m the one with more time to do this. It’s not about who makes plans, it’s about spending quality time together, and enjoying the life we have.

My big, audacious goal for 2015 – become more positive and decisive.

Become more positive. Everything happens for a reason. Instead of going to the negative, I need to take a step back and think about what can be learnt from a situation to improve my life going forward.

Become more decisive. After making a decision I need to remember that it’s been made and can’t be changed. I made it for a reason. It’s time to move on, don’t think about it. Get into a different headspace and think about what else is on the action list for that day.

I already feel like action is a great way to tackle this year, and I hope it works as well for me as create did last year.

If you’d like to read about how I set create as my one little word for 2014 please click here and click here to read about how it worked out. Or click here to read about how I came across focus.

If you’d like to see the resources I used to set my one little word, as well as some inspirational quotes please visit my one little word – olw or goal setting Pinterest boards.

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One little word 2015 Focus

OLW 2015 focus Image source

I love making lists and setting goals, which is why I always set New Year’s Resolutions.

Last year I had 11 resolutions. However, I wasn’t entirely happy with them. When I thought about them I realised that like most other years these resolutions would probably be forgotten about by February.

So I decided to forget about them and instead base my year on one word, one little word that would determine how I made decisions, and how I lived my life.

After some research I discovered that many people were already doing this, and it was working for them.

Through my research I stumbled upon a workbook by Martine Holston on how to define your year. I completed the workbook and set my one little word for 2014, which was create.

You can read about how I choose create here and can read about how successful create was for me here.

To set my one little word for this year I used Martine Holston’s workbook again. This year my one little word is focus.

How did I choose focus? It was really natural. After doing Martine’s warm up activities and looking at words that other people have chosen in the past, I chose 5 words that could become my one little word for this year, which were:

  1. Focus
  2. Choose
  3. Commit
  4. Decide
  5. Moment

For me, focus stood out from the start. It felt good and was actually a front runner last year, so I couldn’t look past it. Focus- it was a no brainer, this would be my word.

Focus
“A main purpose or interest

So now that I had my one little word I set three goals, which are:

  1. Focus on this blog. Really commit to it, stick to a posting schedule, dedicate time to it. Grow its content and community.
  2. Focus on the moment, enjoy and appreciate where I am instead of thinking about what else I could be doing, or where else could be more fun.
  3. Focus on being financially responsible and saving money, instead of buying things I don’t need.

My big, audacious goal for this year:

To be more focused when making decisions. I don’t want to overthink them or doubt them. I want to focus on what’s important in my life and make decisions that will get me to where I want to be.

I’m excited on where focus will take me this year. I’m curious on how much it will allow me to focus on the moment and make decisions that are good for me.

If you’d like to see the resources I used to set my one little word, as well as some inspirational quotes please visit my Pinterest boards one little word – olw or goal setting.

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Has setting one little word for 2014 worked for me?

One little word review Image from Pinterest

Setting New Year’s Resolutions is something that most of us start doing at this time of the year, and I am definitely no different.

This year I set 11 New Year’s Resolutions, but after doing so I wasn’t inspired to do them. I knew that these 11 resolutions would be forgotten about by February.

So I thought; what if I just set a theme for my year instead?

After a little research I found out that this was something that people were already doing. They were theming their year and setting yearly goals by using one little word, and it was working for them.

I found a fantastic resource by Martine Holston called Define your year, year theme workbook, and used it to define my own one little word.

You can read about the process I went through here.

So, what was my one little word for 2014? It was Create. And this is what it meant for me:

  1. Create moods that affect those around me positively – become the person I want to be around
  2. Create a healthy lifestyle for a healthy mind, body, and spirit
  3. Create a life outside of work. Start hobbies that express my creative side, that fulfil me, and take the focus off finding the perfect job

I also had to set one big audacious goal for 2014, and it was to start a blog.

So, how did my year turn out? Was setting one little word good for me? Let’s see:

Create moods that affect those around me positively – become the person I want to be around

Yep, I can get moody, mostly when it’s incredibly hot, but sometimes for no reason at all. This year I really, really wanted to control this. I didn’t want Nick to be on the receiving end of a bad mood that he didn’t cause. I definitely feel like this has improved for me this year. I had a plan of attack, whenever I felt a bad mood coming along I would watch TV, read, bake, or even just go to bed. I would do anything to remove myself from taking my mood out on others. I really feel an improvement here, and I’m very happy about this

Create a healthy lifestyle for a healthy mind, body, and spirit

Forever, and I mean it, I’ve obsessed about what I eat, why did I eat that, I need to stop eating, etc. I don’t feel like this goal was achieved, as I still obsess about my food intake. I think the only way I can stop focusing on this is by not making body image or food related goals ever again. This will take some getting used to, but from now on whenever I annoy myself about how much I’ve eaten, or why I’ve eaten something, I will just stop the thought all together.

Create a life outside of work. Start hobbies that express my creative side, that fulfil me, and take the focus off finding the perfect job.

This was a massive goal for me this year, and one I really, really wanted to achieve. I felt like if I could achieve this goal then I could also improve my moods. After lots of lists and researching hobbies, I decided I was interested in baking, cooking, being a tourist in my own city, and blogging. I am pleased to say that I feel like I have taken huge steps in achieving this goal. By having this goal I finally took the plunge to start this blog, which also has a cooking and baking section to it. This blog has given me the something to focus on when I haven’t had a job, something to keep me interested and inspired, and something that I am growing to cherish.

Setting one little word to theme my year has been one of the best things that I have ever done.

It has guided me every day, allowed me to be more focussed, and made me set inspiring goals instead of restrictive resolutions.

Most importantly, it has given me the massive push I needed to start this blog, to which I will be forever grateful.

If you’d like to read about what my one little word for 2015 is then click here.

If you’d like to read some resources on how to set your own one little word, or resolutions if you’d prefer, please visit my one little word – olw  or goal setting Pinterest boards.

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One little word Create

Create

The story behind the birth of this blog stems from setting my New Year’s resolutions. After going through the process of determining what I wanted to achieve this year, I realised that the whole New Year’s resolution process wasn’t working for me. I always had so many resolutions, which I’d usually forget by February.

So after going through the same process this year, and having 11 resolutions that I knew I’d never do, I thought why don’t I set a theme for my year instead?

The process of setting a theme started with researching how to do this, making lists, getting ideas, and getting my head around this new way of goal setting.

This is when I discovered that many people were already doing this. They were exchanging New Year’s resolutions for a yearly theme. However, they were taking it one step further by defining their year by a single word. One word that would define how they acted and what goals they would set for the year ahead.

So the process of choosing my one word began.

From all the resources available, the one that I most closely resonated with was a workbook to use to define your year by Martine Holston. As I worked through the workbook many questions were asked, pondered, and evaluated.

The process started with choosing five words that could be my word of the year. I selected these words based on what other people who had already undertaken the process selected. These words were:

  1. Create
  2. Focus
  3. Habit
  4. Decisiveness
  5. Choice

I researched the meaning of each and thought about each carefully.

No matter what word I considered create kept leaping out. As a further sign that create should be my word I remembered that when I initially thought about defining my year I thought about the things I love doing and how I could implement these into my word. The one thing I loved doing from the year before was making envelopes to house candy canes and attaching them to the Christmas gifts I was wrapping. I loved the creativity it involved and initially thought, before even realising that people were defining their year, that this year could be the year where I’m more creative.

Candy cane envelopes

 

My inspiration from the year before

The word create just kept popping up, it was instinctive. So I decided that create would be my word, it just felt good.

Now that I had chosen the word create I had to formulate three goals identifying how living a year of create would influence them. I used my list of New Year’s resolutions to assist me.

My new create oriented goals became:

  1. Create moods that affect those around me positively – become the person I want to be around
  2. Create a healthy lifestyle for a healthy mind, body, and spirit
  3. Create a life outside of work. Start hobbies that express my creative side, that fulfill me, and take the focus off finding the perfect job

The final step was deciding upon one big goal for the year. I decided that my third goal was the most important. Finding something outside of work that fulfilled me would ultimately lead to better moods and a healthy mind, body, and spirit. So after researching hobbies that I may enjoy I decided that my one big goal for this year was to start blogging, to write about my experiences, document my crazy ideas, and get things out of my head and in the world.

And that is how this blog was born. I hope it has a long life.

If you’d like to find out how this theme worked for me, please click here.

To find out what one little word of the year this process led me to for 2015, click here.

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