We have all probably been there.
Sitting in your room, looking at your computer screen, you knew that you had a final paper due in about a month.
You had already thought of the topic that you wanted to write on, but with the paper needing to be at least 15 pages long and containing at least 8 outside resources, you didn’t even want to think about sitting down for hours trying to hash out this paper.
So, hours go by and days go by – in the back of your head, you know that you have a paper to do; you’re very nice teacher has reminded you in class. And then finally, three weeks and three days go by and you’re staring down into the mouth of this deadline.
Gulp…will I be able to pass?
How are you going to find 8 outside sources, incorporate them into a 15-page paper, and get this paper written out in a decent, sense-making way in 2 days?
We all have goals or even things that we want to do, but we put them off for another time when we feel like it—when we’re at a state of ease with getting started.
“I think I’ll ease my way into writing this paper out with a tall cup of coffee…”
Yeah, and you’ll probably be frazzled by the end.
If we continue to put off our goals or the things that we want to do, how will we ever really expect to reach them?
With an important task like a final paper that might seem a little overwhelming, it would help to break completing this paper down into smaller tasks and essentially smaller goals that would help you hit this larger goal.
How can I set myself up to reach my goals?
One strategy that could help you reach your goals, especially larger goals such as completing a final paper, increasing your chances to land another position, or earn a promotion, is to break those larger goals down into smaller, chewable goals that will help you to get there.
One tool that can help you reach your goals is Trello. Trello is a project-management system that can be used by businesses and individuals alike for various purposes.
Don’t believe me? Check out their inspiration page.
For this month of January 2018, we’re going to be setting 1 goal each week, posting each goal in the Facebook Group (join by clicking here & logging in to Facebook), and also posting each goal on our Trello Board.
The purpose of using a Trello Board is to allow each of us to visually see each other’s goals and see each other’s progress each week. So, Trello not only gives us a space to put our goals, but also a space to help track our progress.
With Trello, you can create cards with your goals, upload a picture or attach other media, and even set a due date that you can you get a reminder for 24 hours before your goal is due. If you want to learn more about these features, check out some of their board basics by clicking here.
Example – Setting Goals with Trello
Let’s go back to our previous example of a student having a final paper to complete by the end of the semester.
The paper must:
- Be at least 15 pages long
- Contain at least 8 outside sources
- Be properly formatted according to standards
If you remember something about writing papers, you’ve got to make sure that you not list sources throughout the paper, but you’ve got to explain how those sources relate to your own ideas. And that takes a some time and effort.
“The What” – Larger Goal:
- Complete final paper in 4 weeks
“The How” – Smaller Goals:
- Complete brainstorming (devote 1 week to gathering your ideas & research)
- Complete drafting (devote 1 week to drafting)
- Revise draft (devote 1 week to revising and editing)
- Complete final copy (devote several days to typing the final copy)
Notice how we’ve spread out our larger goal over the course of 4 weeks – so it can be done.
Let’s break this down into 4 weekly goals to be put onto the Trello Board:
- Week 1 – Spend 1 hour each day completing the brainstorming & researching process
- Week 2 – Spend 1 hour each day completing a rough draft
- Week 3 – Spend 1 hour each day revising & editing
- Week 4 – Spend 1 hour for the next 3 days typing the final copy
And that is how you create bite-sized goals to help you hit your larger goal.
What if you’re not a student?
Here are several other goals that this process can be used for:
- A Weight loss/fitness goal
- Seeking a different job role
- Seeking a job promotion
- Learning a new skill
- Planning/organization for teachers
- Study habits for students
- And so on…
Here’s Your Goalwork That’s Due Tomorrow (Jan. 9th)
- Share Goal 1 for this week under the Facebook Group “Goalwork” post.
- Post Goal 1 on the Trello board by tomorrow (Jan. 9th). You can find the link to our Trello Board on the “Goalwork” post.
Not in the group but want to join?
It’s not too late, you can find the group by clicking here, logging into Facebook, and clicking the “Join” button.
Tomorrow we’re going to talk about Google Calendar and how you can use it for daily or even weekly planning. We’re also going to talk about a technique that can help you to be a better self-starter.