Pretty much every year I write a post like this! It’s not because it’s necessary, which it might be, but I truly enjoy this half way point in the year as a way to reflect and continue on, or reflect and re-calibrate to then continue on. This year I feel very hopeful at this point. I am not just talking about for myself, but for everyone. I set a lot of goals at the start of the year, I am not on track to reach all of them, but it’s been a great year so far. For me, it will be a mixture of reflect, renew and re-calibrate. For many things I will stay the course and continue on, and for some of my goals I need a new plan.
Why am I feeling so hopeful this year? I think it’s got a lot to do with the personal growth work I have done in the past year or so. I have been teaching my self through the guidance of others to really stick to what matters- in thought, word and deed. This has saved me a great deal of time and energy for the things that are most important. I have saved emotional energy more than anything. I am hopeful for everyone, because I know that if I can do it, others can,too. And maybe I get to have a hand in helping others or being an example for living a good and happy life.
In reflect and review mode, I haven’t found a better way (and if you’ve been reading my posts, or listening to me for a while, you will recognize this) than looking into the 8 areas of our lives. In this post I want to go through the 8 areas with some thoughts for you to consider in each area for your own life, and I will share some of my own examples with you. Use these to formulate your own SECOND HALF PLAN, to move forward toward goals in a bigger and more energized way!
In this area you can consider anyone in your family, or who is like family to you. What goals do you have for time with them, things you want to do with and for them. These are YOUR goals, not things you want them to do. Think things you have control of and a say in. Most of my thoughts in this area circle around time and experiences. I set goals to set time to spend with family members together and separately, and activities I would like to do with them. What about your significant other partnership? What goals would you like to set specifically about that?
In this area think about how often you have been seeing friends and enjoying fun with others outside of your family members. The frequency of this is totally personal. In different seasons of life this will look differently. Even during different seasons of the year. The idea around this is to be purposeful and intentional. In this area I find with working with my clients that many times we have to be ready to be the orchestrator. I see plenty of people offended or with hurt feelings not to be included or not to be doing things with friends, heck, I have been there myself! I have friends that if I didn’t try to set up a time to get together with them, it would never happen. I make the effort because my life is better when I get to spend time with them. I like to see friends at least a handful of times each week and I have to save time in my schedule and make plans to make it happen.
This area is all about what you are learning. Personal growth, expanding your thinking and your mind. I always have reading goals- a list of books I want to read, classes to take, experiences I want to have each month, my coaches. Some of this takes planning ahead- especially with classes. Spending time with people who make you think is also good- so some areas overlap. I also put magazines, podcasts, anything I want to learn from into my plan. So ask yourself- in the next six months, how many books would you like to read? What classes and conferences would you like to attend? What’s your elevated plan for this area to be stronger mentally in the second half of the year? Another mental aspect to consider is meditation and anything you might be doing to increase brain health. When I write goals about meditation they show up in this area, health and spiritual areas, as well. Meditation is one of the most important mental things I do each day.
This is a great area to review, although sometimes not easy! So many areas to focus on- I tend to look at it like mind-body-spirit goals. I have the mind covered in the previous area, and coming later you will see the spiritual area, so this area I focus on the body. Things to think about- are you on track with your fitness? Weight, muscle, endurance capability, food intake-quality and quantity. Do you want or need a stronger or different plan. One thing I suggest here is to keep things simple. Complicated health plans will go by the wayside. Also, do you need to have any doctors appointments in the next 6 months? Dentist, nutrients, acupuncture, chiropractor. Do you need a complete physical (for most people it is suggested once per year), are you on track with your vitamins and supplements and other medications? Are you getting enough fresh air and time in nature? What about sleep? Take a good look at all of these things as you plan a great second half of the year.
This is a simple area and a call to review in what ways you are and would like to make an impact in the community- community service- where you will give your time and talent. It could be donating time or money, or both. What is meaningful to you? For some clients this is an essential and big part of their lives, for others- again depending upon the season of life- this may be a smaller goal. When you have school aged kids, much of your community time will go to things they are involved in, or their schools. What’s important to you? Where could you make a difference. In this day and age, feeling that you make a meaningful contribution to your community may become more and more important. Also, to consider- is there a group that you might want to attend or join that could help you in one or more areas of your life?
Your business, or career- working in the home, or out. This area covers it all. What are your goals for the next 6 months? How will you get better at what you do? What would you like to do expand or stop. Who do you need to talk with or collaborate with? (social) and what do you need to learn or know better (mental). What activities will you take on? What will your schedule look like? How will you enjoy it more? How do you increase your excellence and what steps will you take and when? Look at where you are at the half way point- are you on track to hit your goal for the year? Are you ahead or behind? What adjustments do you need to make to the goal and why?
This is simple, but impactful. In the first half of the year have you been living within your means, and reaching your goals, paying your bills, saving,but having some fun, as well? Area you paying off debt with a plan? Is it working? What needs adjusting in this area? I make a budget each month, and I have not been 100% strong in following it, so I am getting accountability and stepping up to the plate to follow through on my plans and goals at a much higher level between now and the end of the year. To also think about- would you like to increase your earnings? How could you do it? What steps will you take? How about decreasing expenses?
This area may be the simplest of all for me. Here’s my plan- prayer and meditation time first thing each morning, always having a spiritual book going and daily readings that are just floating around to be picked up at some point in the day. Breathing, yoga, meditation, time in nature. This area has become the foundation for how I live. If you have religion in your life, that’s great- this, again, is such a personal area. Design what works for you- uplifts you and generally makes you a better human being to treat yourself and others more kindly, to be energized, to inspire you to do your work in the world in a bigger way, to give you courage, and to look at the good in things. Making this area strong is such an important foundation for the rest of your life. You don’t have to change everything all at once- pick something and start working with it. In addition. having gratitude and a regular practice of gratitude in your life change change your spiritual self in profound ways.
Take your time and have fun with this. The best thing is that you make a few, simple plans for over the next months, that you look at this at least once per week, and make a specific plan each month and break it down for each week to stay on track. The more you look at and work with these goals, the less likely you will be to get off track.
And don’t be afraid to change your goals at any point. This is all to be worked with- none of it is set in stone. And lastly- don’t forget to always congratulate yourself for all that you have done and are doing- big or small.
Always asking yourself – “What is the next right step?” is a great way to keep yourself from getting stuck, to stay present and to reach your goals.