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Yearly Goals

February 14, 2014

Its mid February and 12% of the year is gone.  July Fourth is less than five months away.  Do you remember your New Years resolutions?  Did you right them down?  How are you doing?

In business we all have goals and objectives.  Typically goals are written annually and reviewed quarterly.  At the end of the year or at review time, we pull them out and see if we accomplished what we set out to do. 

While we all know goals are important, the reality is that many of us don't take the time to write them down and worse yet we really don't review them as often as we should.  I was guilty of this for many years until one New Years Eve my wife and I were discussing the past year and thinking about the upcomming year.  It was a great discussion and as we talked about our accomplishments and plans we found ourselves including all our accomplishments (and failures) for the past year...this included on farm as well as off farm.  As we started discussing the upcomming year, my wife grabbed a pen and paper (yes this was many years ago) and we began writting down all our goals for the new year.  Call them New Years resolutions, call them goals, call it a to do list, call it whatever you like, what we found is that we had created a detail plan of what we wanted to achieve in the new year.  That list including everything, my goals for work, our plans for the farm, things we wanted to do together and things we needed to for ourselves.

Now before you stop reading because you've heard this before, don't.  I fully acknowledge that writing down your goals is not a new idea.  Including all your goals and plans for the year on a single list is also not a new idea.  In fact, that is my point.  We all know we should write down our goals and objectives, however, many of use don't take the time to do it.   In order for me to achieve my dreams, its not an option and well worth the time.  One of the reasons I'm living my dream is because I write it down plain and simple.  Its not a fancy list or in a special format.  Instead, I create a simple bulleted list that I broadly catagorize (Faith, Family, Farming, Work, Health, House, etc.) and then I create sub bullets under each catagory including dates wherever possible.  It's not hard.

Living the Dream Advice - Write it down plain and simple by creating a comphrensive list of goals and objectives for the year.

So now for the hard part.   When was the last time you looked at your list?   I started this article by asking when did you review your New Years Resolutions.  Be honest, most New Years Resolutions are fogotten soon after the holiday spirit leaves us.  It is critical that you review your list on a regular basis.  Again, this is not a new idea and I know many experts have written about this. At a minimum, I look at my list at the beginning of the month.  I also review the list with my better half on a monthly basis. 

As we live in the country, we're about thirty minutes away from many of the resturants we like, so what we do is print out the list, I drive and my wife Cindy reads the list and we discuss the status.  Typically, the list becomes the dinner conversation and usually by end of the meal we've completed the list review and are both on the same page with respect to our plans.  I include my off farm (job) goals in our discussion.  I'm not certain who benefits more from reviewing my work goals; it clearly helps me but I also think it helps my wife to better understand my job.   If I was really brave, I'd review all my yearly goals with my boss on a regular as I suspect we'd both find it beneficial. 

Living the Dream Advice - Review you goals and objectives at least monthly and with another person.

One final piece of advice.  If you haven't written down your goals.  Stop reading this and take ten minutes to write down your goals and objectives for the year.  Open up your email and send yourself an email with your goals.  Its not hard.  Then setup a recurring calendar event to review your list.  And finally, share your plans with another trusted individual.  By reviewing your goals with another individual your will find your much more honest about what you can accomplish...

Written by:  Tom Rivers 2/14/2014

Rivers Critters Ranch, LLC

We own and operate Rivers Critters Ranch, LLC, which was founded in 1997.  As the name suggests the farm belongs to the animals we seem to be just the caretakers.

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This site is dedicated to those of us who have dream to farm.   Inside you will find information, stories, pictures and advice outlining the experiences of a city born family who acted upon the dream to move to the country and  live on a farm.  Join us as we share our adventures! 

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