Goal Setting in 2020 – So-So Results

Goal Setting is one of the elements of putting Positive Psychology to work. (Blog link here)  While I’ve not been that intentional on life goals (yet), I have set and tracked yearly goals in some of my activity areas.

BLOG POSTS – My personal goal is 1 blog/week, which I tend to post on Sunday evening (habit). So with a 52/year goal, in 2020, I had 42 posts published (this post is #43).  But, as I was checking on that, I also saw that I had over 7000 visitors to my blog in 2020!  That number is a WOW to me! Thank you so much for being here!! 

So while not hitting the goal, I am still pretty happy that after 5 years blogging, I’m still here and my readers are as well.  In case you were curious what they were reading, my posts with highest views this past year were:

  • WOTY 2020 – Release (link)
  • What I’m Not Doing – Am I a Quarantine Failure? (link)
  • Gratitude (link)
  • Summer in Isolation (link)

NEW THINGS – My goal in 2020 was 101 New Things. Obviously the pandemic hit this goal space hard.   I only managed to get to 80 for the year.  Given the year we’ve had, I guess that’s pretty good.  Back in August I caught up on my New Things list (link here),which still captures the year as the new things did not progress much further.

Now if I had counted all the new recipes I tried, that might have hit over 101!  Of course, few of those new recipes were good enough to be added into our normal rotation. I am still in search of a good recipe for Thai Spicy Brown Sauce for stir-fry! My goal continues to be at least one new recipe a week.  Maybe next year, I’ll keep better track of what I’ve tried and how it worked out (or didn’t work out).

BOOKS READ – This goal area was a new category for me this year.  I’ve always been an avid reader but never kept track of books read, not even with one of the on-line systems.  I set a goal of 52 – one per week.  As you might imagine, with the pandemic, that was goal blown away.  I hit 98 by the end of November and expect it could be over 100 by end of the year, but we also just started binge watching a new-to-us TV series, so evening reading is not happening!

So overall, my goal achievement was so-so. But I am OK with that as I believe that by tracking areas, I tend to do more of each of them than I might have by not tracking.

As I move into 2021, can you help me understand what activity goals do you set and track that are linked to your life goals? 

Picture Credit: me. a return to our Florida morning view – 1st December sunrise on return.

16 thoughts on “Goal Setting in 2020 – So-So Results

  1. Pat, by anyone’s standards you have achieved a lot during these past Covid months. You should be patting yourself on the back! What works for me is just being aware of what makes me happy and doing something toward that ultimate goal. I generally define my balanced lifestyle within the parameters of mind, body and spirit and try to pay attention to each of those areas weekly. I used to use a journal to set goals, but these days, I find that writing my blog holds me accountable for what I set out to accomplish. Best wishes for a successful 2021 and may that success be determined only by you!

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    1. For me, each of these are different than achieving the final/ultimate goal number (52, 100)… it’s about each individual step – the journey. And yes, all three of these things make me happy – new things, books read, blogs posted. Of course, this approach also appeals to the list-maker in me! I like your approach with mind, body, and spirit, as well as thinking of it weekly. I do a weekly calendar in my journal and will definitely be thinking about finding weekly balance! Happy new year to you!

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  2. You did an amazing job in this “unprecedented” year! I’d like to give more thought to some annual goals. I like the idea of striving to try 101 new things over the course of the year.

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    1. Molly, The new things tracking has been something I’ve done now for 3 years. My first year I set a goal of 52…one per week. And realized that if you shift to a mindset of trying new things, it can be quite easy to fill up a list quickly. Anything can count, if you feel it’s new. Driving a new way to someplace, trying a new food or restaurant, taking a class on a new topic. Just today I was playing on Canva trying to create new picture/quote combinations for my blog – a new thing for me! The other element of a goal like this…even if you don’t hit the final number target, every item can be a memory and an accomplishment in itself. Yes, I have this (101 new things) on my 2021 list again.

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  3. You have a lot to be proud of! None of us saw this weird year coming, so that you were able to get close to – and in some cases, exceed – your goals is terrific! Let me know if you ever find that perfect Thai Spicy Brown Sauce. I love to make stir fry and would welcome any additions to our recipe file. Have a wonderful (and safe) Christmas, Pat!

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    1. Janis, I half-hoped someone would see that comment about the Thai Brown Sauce and offer one up! If I do find one I like, I will pass it on. I’ve tried 2-3 different ones and nothing has really hit the right flavor for us. Like you, I love to make stir fry. Happy New Year to you!

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  4. I love the picture credit. I’m a slave to the process of giving credit on all pictures I post, but I rarely give any to myself! Congrats on the number of hits this year; that’s a testament to the useful content you provide. Night reading is not happening for me either, but I really can’t blame the TV. I’m just too tired! – Marty

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    1. Marty, one of my un-mentioned “goals” is to try and be aware of/ out in nature more, prove it with taking pictures, and then use them in my blog posts. Combines multiple life elements – nature, creativity (photography), and blogging. It’s not always working as I’m not yet in the habit of picture taking, but I am trying. Happy Holidays!

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  5. Wow, I’m impressed by your reading. I think I will be one short of my goal of 35 for the year. I read more when I first retired but that time has been replaced with other hobbies so now I mostly read before bed or in the middle of the night when I can’t sleep. I have started my book list for 2021, again trying to get through the inventory of books I already have.

    I did get a bunch of cross stitching done but have taken a break for the last couple of weeks even though it feels funny not to have stitching in my hands every evening. I’ve found I’m definitely more productive when I plan ahead so I’m thinking about what I would like to stitch in 2021. So many possibilities!! Then I will make sure I have all the supplies I need. Easier to order it all at once!

    Merry Christmas to you and your Tim. Savor that Florida air!!

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    1. I’m quite a fast reader. Tim says that’s because I tend to skim over details. And when I get into a book I’m enjoying, I’ve been known to stay up till the early morning hours reading. Cross-stitching for me goes slow! Seriously slow – my last project took me about 10 years to do. I’m wondering why I even bought another, but I did enjoy working on it and thinking this winter’s continued isolation will give me time to sit and do that. Merry Christmas to you!

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  6. I think you did way better than soso. Especially given the situation for the year. Trying to find new things that were Covid safe couldn’t have been that easy. I don’t really thinkI set actual goals for myself other than getting into shape and losing weight which I set pretty much every year and pretty much never make! But perhaps I should. I’m going to have to think about that. Would it be better to set goals and possibly not make them or just not set any and not feel obligated. Am I motivated enough to meet goals. Now there’s the real question for me.

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    1. Candyse, what I’ve realized is my tracking areas are really things that make me happy, and so filling the lists is very motivational. If it’s just 25 things (instead of 50), at least it’s 25 things that made me happy. Not really any downside to not hitting the goal. And with the lists, I can look back and reminisce about the enjoyment I had as well. The new things list also motivates me to try things… like a wreath-making workshop! Merry Christmas!!

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  7. Hi Pat – I’m not really a goal setter these days. I feel that doing so plays into all the parts of me that I’m trying to discard – the sense of failure when I don’t meet one, the Type A push to tick all the boxes, the “busy” persona, and the need to be driven to achieve. I’m more focused these days on just being in the day itself – it probably doesn’t work for those who need to feel they’ve accomplished certain objectives, but for me it means that I’m not berating myself for not achieving things that in the grand scheme of things have very little importance. I enjoy following your more structured approach, but for me it’s about being more cruisy these days. Have a great Christmas and I hope covid hasn’t messed too much with your plans for the season xx

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    1. Leanne, Wishing you a very merry Christmas. It will be very quiet at this end…not even attending mass (looking for an on-line service). And, you are right, goals and lists and structure are not everyone’s cup of tea….but they work for me. I try not to let them make me feel like I’ve failed, but rather use them to motivate me. I’ve also realized that having these lists allow me to look back and relive the good things that have happened – very much needed this year!

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