The start of April means we survived another quarter – hurrah! A year or so ago, I made the decision to start making quarterly goals and boy, oh, boy did it change the goal game for me. In the past I’d always had a big goal making session at the beginning of the year. But after a month or so, in classic New Year’s resolution style, I’d run out of steam and completely forget what my goals were in the first place.
Having a quarterly review gives me the chance to refocus – to look at where I’m currently heading and consider whether I’d like to change direction. It’s also a way of injecting more of that crisp, exciting, new-year feeling into my life (i.e. my favourite feeling of all time) – and who doesn’t want more of that?
So in this post, I’m going to breakdown exactly how I conduct a personal quarterly goal review and how you can to! I’ve also included a handy quarterly goal review workbook that you can use to complete each step:
Why You Should Make Quarterly Goals
- You might be in a different season – sometimes we have to prioritise the hustle, other times we have to prioritise our health. When we rely solely on yearly goals, we put the expectation on ourselves that we’ll be consistent in what we need/want throughout the whole year, which just isn’t the case.
- You get to experience bursts of new excitement and motivation throughout the year, not just on 1st January.
- You can keep a tighter focus on your goals – often when making yearly goals, we forget about them because we don’t have scheduled check-in dates. With quarterly goals, you can take a look at what’s working and what isn’t and really commit to achieving those big dreams.
PART ONE: PAST QUARTER REVIEW
1. What Were Your Goals for the Last Quarter?
First of all, it’s time to check-in on last quarter’s goals. Write them down and put a tick next to the ones you’ve achieved. For those that you haven’t yet achieved, make a note as to why this was the case. Perhaps it wasn’t realistic for the short time frame. Perhaps it’s a goal that’s no longer important to you. Whatever it is, make sure to make a note of what held you back last quarter.
2. Check-In On Your Values
Your values are a couple of key concepts that you believe are important to live your life by. Examples of values that you might wish to embody include: being compassionate towards others, acting with love towards yourself and your body, trusting your intuition, or not caring what others think of you. How do you feel that you’ve lived these values in the last three months? And what are some areas you need to work on or instances that tripped you up?
3. What Were Your Wins & High Points?
What were your wins across the past three months? Did you achieve something amazing – like running a marathon or waking up early every morning to work on your goals? Write down how it made you feel and why you think you were successful. Now is also a great opportunity to think about the amazing memories you made this month – time spent with friends, discovering a new yoga class, going on holiday. Look at this list of wins & high points and consider how you can integrate more of these things into your life. How can you do more of what you enjoy?
4. What Were Your Lessons Learnt & Low Points?
Now it’s time to do the opposite. What things didn’t go so well this month and how can you learn from them? Maybe your exercise routine slipped or you didn’t get as much traffic to your online launch as you’d hoped. Workout how to switch things up to fix these issues. Find a new exercise class or get an accountability partner. Sign up for a course on online launches & listen to relevant podcasts for tips. Make a plan of action for fixing these bumps in the road.
Also consider which memories from the past 3 months aren’t so nice. Maybe you argued with your partner a few times or a friend continually put you down and made you feel bad about yourself. Work out how you can avoid making these kinds of memories again in the future. Communicate with your partner about ways you can work through issues. Find friends that love and support you. Brainstorm how you can reduce the negative in your life for the next quarter.
5. What’s Your Behavioural Game Plan?
Use the last few steps to write down a game plan of things you’re going to switch up in the next quarter in an attempt to bring in more of the good times and less of the bad.
PART TWO: UPCOMING QUARTER PLAN
6. What Are You Craving? How Do You Want to Feel?
Ask yourself what you’re craving for the next few months. How do you want to feel? Maybe you feel a real need to slow things down and are craving some calm & stability. Maybe instead you’re craving adventure, fun and excitement. Take a moment to work out what season you’re in and what feeling you’re ultimately aiming to cultivate over the next few months.
7. What Are Your New Quarterly Goals?
Now it’s time to write down your goals for the next quarter. Where do you want to be in 3 months time? Don’t forget to make your goals SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time bound). You might want to use your review of last quarter’s goals to help you create your new ones. Try to pick things that make you feel really alive and excited for the next three months.
8. What Is The One Thing You Can Achieve In The Next Quarter That’ll Change Your Life The Most?
Whilst it’s great to have lots of goals, the more you have, the harder it can be to achieve them. I’d highly recommend picking one goal and focusing as much of your energy as possible there. Ask yourself, which of these goals, if achieved, would change my life the most? That’s the goal you have to go for. Try not to divide your energy too much between different things and instead work on going all-out towards the thing that will make the biggest positive change in your life.
9. Create a Goal Breakdown List
Write down a list of steps that are necessary to take in order to achieve your big goal for the next quarter. When you’re done, stick it up somewhere you’ll see it often and tick off each item as you do them. This way your goal becomes much more manageable and your mini victories throughout the quarter will spur you to keep going.
10. What Habit Would You Like to Build?
Once you’ve picked your one big goal it’s time to pick your one big habit. This isn’t necessarily about making massive strides towards anything but instead creating a daily practice that will improve your life in some way. Make it your aim to make this practice a habit, so that it becomes second-nature. Again, try to pick just the one, in order to give yourself the best chance of sticking to it.
11. Pick Your Affirmation
Now it’s time to pick your affirmation for the next few months. If you’re not already familiar, an affirmation is a positive statement used to help you to challenge negative beliefs. Try to work out which of your beliefs regularly hold you back and create an affirmation to counteract this. For example, if you believe that you’re ugly and hate your body, which ruins your confidence, your affirmation might be, ‘I love my body and am grateful for everything it does’. Write down your affirmation or speak it aloud every day for the next 3 months.
12. Pick Your Power Word
Use the previous steps to work out a guiding word that you can use to focus your thoughts when making decisions. Power words are words traditionally used by copywriters to trigger an emotional response in their reader – they have the power to influence them. So pick a word that triggers an emotional response when you hear it. Try a few out and settle on the one that feels right. Aim to use this word as a guiding tool for the next 3 months – write it at the top of your journal page each day, save it as your screensaver, or stick it up above your desk to remind you of it.