88. How to plan yearly goals and habits in the 9 areas of life

Welcome to the New Year friends! This is the time we feel this resolution to make things new, as we flip over the calendar. There is a lot of thought given to resolutions, goals and habits to make. And all of that is good – when it is in line with your LIFE ON PURPOSE

Life on Purpose is turning off the autopilot – being reactive, just living on default. When we do the things we have always done, thing what we have always thought we will keep getting more of the same. Do you like where you autopilot life is taking you? Or do you want to redirect it?

Life on Purpose is living with INTENTION, and it needs two things:

  1. knowing who you want to be, how you want to show up (values)
  2. knowing where you want to go (vision)

I will share with you my strategy for setting out my yearly goals and habits. And remember, all of this work is NOT about overhauling your whole life and getting to 100% in all nine areas of your life, it is about being someone who does simple meaningful things, consistently, towards their vision and values. 


Steps to plan out your yearly goals and habits 

  1. Values – take time to get clear on your personal values
  2. Vision – write out what you want and long for and aspire to in the nine areas of your life
    • Home, family, love, friendships, health, work, inner expression, outer expression, finances
  3. Take stock, evaluate where you are right now. This helps you set a path on the direction to take forward. Ask: What is working? What is not? What do I want more of? What do I want less of?
  4. Combine these (values, vision, evaluation) to identify the goals and habits that will move you towards your vision and values in this area of your life. 


Some of my goals and habits I want to do in 2021

We have been doing this work for the past five years and continue to modify and refine where we want to go and how we want to get there.  In this episode, I am sharing some of the goals and habits I am setting for this year ahead:

  • Home: filing papers, digitizing kid’s artwork, routine deep cleanings
  • Kids: family meetings, hikes (with friends! Which combines my family vision and friend vision for the year)
  • Health: last year I worked a lot of sleep and vegetables. This year I am working on movement and nourishing lunches
  • Outer: get outside (daily), make music easier (piano project)
  • Inner: devotion goals, reading a book a month, memorizing scripture
  • Finances: making more debt-free purchases, more detailed tracking of expenses


I also answered some of the questions sent in to me about planning life on purpose:

  1. How to pick the values and vision God has for my life?
  2. How do I get my husband more involved in setting goals and habits together?
  3. What planner do you use?
  4. I feel overwhelmed about planning my life on purpose, where do I even start?


Ways to get support with intentional living this year

The Life on Purpose Roadmap. A self-guided course that addresses the hurdles, excuses and distractions that keep you from knowing what you want, planning it and taking action on it. 

The Life on Purpose Academy. Weekly group coaching calls for the next ten weeks. This gives you support, accountability, consistency and so much insight into what holds you back and how to keep moving forward. 


Remember that doing all of this is about SHOWING UP for yourself, not about overhauling your life.  Small things matter the most, so choose the small things that will move you closer to your vision and values. 


Planning your life on purpose, more resources mentioned in the episode

Permission to grieve blog post

Are you stuck on autopilot? episode

Live your values free worksheets

Live your vision free worksheets

The Life on Purpose Workbook 

The GO CLEAN Instagram account

How empathy can transform your parenting episode

Family meetings blog post and mentioned on this episode

The Life on Purpose Roadmap self-paced course

The Life on Purpose Academy weekly group coaching calls for ten weeks

Fun Cheap or Free video on expense/budget tracking

What my husband thinks about setting goals together episode

The Simple on Purpose Community Facebook group

how to plan yearly goals and habits in the 9 areas of life


Hey, friends, it’s Shawna, your nerdy girlfriend and life coach from simple on purpose.ca. Welcome to the simple on purpose podcast where I want you to make time for what matters, make space for what matters and love what matters to you. And I’ve been really trying to lean into this as we’ve come into 2021.

As you can probably see, if you’re a devoted listener that I have delayed, coming back onto the podcast by a few weeks, it’s been a while, because I really needed to give myself a lot of grace to just slow down the holiday season. It was a beautiful season, it was also very hard for me and my family, my mom had been moved into long term care as her dementia rapidly progressed. And it’s not something that I usually share or talk about, but she’s had dementia for about 10 years now. And now it’s feeling really real and really heavy.

And I went to come to work a couple of weeks ago, and I just couldn’t, I just couldn’t start, I just couldn’t get past that. And I ended up writing about my experience that I had been going through with my mom, and I posted it. And I called it a day my husband said he could hear me down the hallway, just let out a big sigh. and say, okay, because what I had done at that point was give myself permission to share it, which is a form of giving myself permission to grieve. And I hope that in doing so I can give you permission to do the same.

If pain is something that you are going through if grief is something you are walking through that I want you to to give you permission to hold that as valid, to not compare it to what other people are going through and invalidate your own, but to acknowledge it.

So this season has really been one where I’ve my heart feels ripped open with grief and with joy, like the joy of the holidays, and my kids and my husband, and laughing with them and the memories we have but also the grief of what my family is walking through. So I’m holding those both together. And moving towards relief that my both my parents can get the care and support they need now that my mom is in full term care. It’s been bitter, it’s been sweet. And I just want to make a space that we can acknowledge that both of those exists. If you want to read more about that I’ll put the link in the shownotes of the post I wrote about that.

But as I’ve eased into this, I’ve really been thoughtful and slow and thinking about how I want to be intentional this year. And I think we are all thinking about that things feel heavy things feel hard. No matter where you are, no matter what circumstances you have. There’s still this unknown. I mean, life is always unknown, right? Like we can’t blame Coronavirus that we don’t know what’s happening. We’ve never really known. But there is this like real desire to show up intentionally. If we want to leave the residue of 2020 behind. And we want to let this be a season where we’re growing and we’re moving in a direction.

So I’ve taken some time over the past few weeks to go through the life on purpose workbook. And I want to share my own process with you and answer some of the questions you guys shared with me. Funny thing is I recorded most of this episode already. And I realized my microphone was upside down. Over the past three days, I’ve been trying to record things and it wasn’t working. And I’m like going to the ends of the internet for the solution for the software for the drivers just nerding out. Turns out my microphone was upside down. Which I just feel like is a necessary metaphor for my life right now.

All right, so let’s start with what is life on purpose. And if you’re new here, you might be asking that if you’re new here, welcome. By the way, I’m glad you’re here. So life on purpose is essentially turning off the autopilot living. The autopilot is how we’ve always shown up thinking things we’ve always thought doing things we’ve always done, being reactive, letting life happen at us. Instead of being very intentional and constantly redirecting ourselves towards the direction we want to go. autopilot is everything’s on default. And it’s efficient. It’s actually our brains way of making us more efficient in life. To put these things on habits. We don’t have to think about them. We just keep showing up doing what we’ve always done. If we do what we’ve always done, though, we’re going to get what we’ve always got. And if you like that great, your autopilot is going in the right direction. But if you don’t like that, if you want to redirect it somewhere different, that’s going to take some intentional work to do the redirection and then autopilot will kick in as you formed. These intentions and these habits and these new ways of showing up and thinking in order to live life on purpose.

Some people say it’s intentional living, it’s living with intention. In order to live on purpose. You need to have two things. You need to know who you want to be. Those are your personal values, what’s important to you and how you show up. They’re different for everyone and knowing where you want to go? Where do you want to be headed? Don’t just set a goal, but know where that goal is going to take you in the long run of your life. Where do you want to be headed? Where are you going? That is your vision.

So as I opened up the life on purpose workbook this year, and if you have it, you know, values and vision are the two big things that focuses on. And if you don’t have the workbook, maybe have used my free worksheets, live your vision, live your values. Either way, let’s talk about values and vision. I opened up with values, and I looked through them. And I thought, you know, this year, my values feel fairly the same. I feel like over the years as we’ve worked on some and accomplish some that we’ve narrowed in now. And same with our vision, I looked through the vision of the nine areas of our life. And they changed over the years as we’ve done this, I think for about five years now, the vision would shift a little bit in what we where we wanted to go where we were headed. As we’ve accomplished things and moved on as seasons of our life changed. Now our vision is fairly constant. That’s not something I have to go in, and review and rewrite every time.

And I think that’s encouraging. Because when some people think of writing out what they want in their life or writing out their vision, they’re like, I cannot put pen to paper. That’s like writing it in blood that is a legal contract. And no, it’s not, it’s yours, you get to decide you get to alter it. This is just the first step in setting any direction that’s going to start moving you forward. And you get to choose where you’re going along the way, it’s totally up to you. You’re the boss, you’re the boss of what you write. So the nine areas of our life, I’ll I’ll review them, I haven’t the book right here in front of me. They are home, family love, that’s any kind of love relationship, you’re in it. Maybe it’s marriage, health, and well being your friendships, any kind of connection and community that you have work, whether you do paid work or volunteer work, anything that you view as work as an offering as a way you put all your energy into the world to serve other people. Outer expression, that’s what’s fun for you. That’s your hobbies. That’s how you love to express yourself. For some people that might be their home. For some people, that might be how they dress. For some people. It’s art. For some people, it’s sports, like we all express ourselves and engage in the fun of life in a different way. Inner expression, is that inner personal development piece for some of us that includes a big faith foundation. That’s that personal development, how am I growing as a person? What am I paying attention to? In my thought life in my feeling life? Where am I moving to as a higher self as growing as a person, and finances, we all have money, we all understand what that part means.

So as you’re going through these nine areas of your life, you’re gonna want to take stock of where you’re at now. And you might be tempted to just like, No, I just want to focus on where I’m going, I don’t want to think about where I’m at. And a lot of coaches will give you advice that you need to know where you’re where you are. Now, in order to set the direction on how to get where you want to go. It’s a comparison of, I want to go to this destination. I’m looking at the map, well, where am I now you know, like those big dots in the mall that are like you are here. And here’s the bathroom? How do I get to the bathroom, I need to know where I am right now in order to know where I want to go. And I have two really great questions that help you take stock of this help you take stock of where you are now.

The first one isn’t evaluation, it’s what’s working. What’s not, it’s super simple. It’s something that businesses do after big projects. It’s it’s something we’ve even done in our life when we come home from a big trip. And we’re driving home. And we’re like, Okay, what worked, what didn’t like I even sometimes put it in the Google Doc. So I don’t forget, and I can write notes and what we want to do different. This isn’t about overwhelming you, you might feel overwhelmed by the idea of pointing out everything that’s not working in the different areas of your life. This is more about giving yourself permission to open that door, and peek inside. You know if I want to be really honest with myself, what’s not working in this part of my life. So I know what I want to change and a little bit of pat on the back, like what is working because life isn’t 100% good or 100%? Bad. It’s always in the middle. So there’s going to be good and bad on both sides.

And the next question I like to take from here is more of less of what do I want more of? What do I want less of I went through all the nine areas of my life. And it’s easy for me to make a list here. What do I want more of here? What do I want less of here? So I take all of that I take my values, my vision, more of less of what’s working, what’s not. There’s other evaluation questions in the life on purpose workbook that pull a little bit more out of you. But I use all of that and I set out the goals and habits I want to work on this year.

Goals are like those one time projects. They’re moving me towards my vision. And those habits or those routine things I want to do often through the year, maybe their monthly maybe their weekly, maybe their daily. So a habit doesn’t have to be something you’re doing every day. It could be something you do every season. What are the habits of things I want to do regularly that are gonna move me towards my vision, my overall vision.

So I’ll share some of mine and I have the workbook right here, I actually used last year’s workbook I just wrote in a different color pen. So it was kind of nice to reflect on what we had written last year. And it was really cool, because some of these things, we nailed it, some of these things we wrote down, we set the intention, there’s power in that there’s power in simply writing down what you want, spending time to be clear in your mind, to get clear on what you want, and put pen to paper, there is a term for I can’t remember, it’s the combination of neuro neuroscience. And sorry, I’m dropping things I get so excited. The combination of neuroscience and physiology that the muscles of writing down and the brain activity, that something powerful is happening, that your brain is almost imprinting this, this information that you’re writing down. So I’m a huge nerdy notetaker. I’ve written lots of notes over the years. And I think that is very true, the more you write something down, the more real it becomes for you. So some of these things, we wrote them down. And they happened. It’s not like some magical manifesting, it’s like we wrote them down, we paid attention to them, we gave them a voice. And they happen this year, some of them didn’t happen. Some of them are hard, some of them require a lot more energy and a lot more intention. And these are the things I’m going to take into 2021. These are the things I’m going to keep nurturing, because it’s all about progress over perfection. This is not about overhauling all nine areas of your life and getting to 100% in every single one. This is about showing up and doing the little things. Because you know what feels great. Doing something that feels like you’re moving in a direction, it doesn’t feel great to try to overhaul your life 100% It feels great to show up each day and be like, I’m proud of myself for that simple thing I did. That’s moving towards where I want to go. So as I looked through the past years, and this year’s, some of the home projects that we have this year, are some regular, regular routines where we want to set for filing papers for putting the kids art into the art app on the phone so we can recycle it and not have piles of artwork, because we can’t even keep all of this guy’s

some regular deep cleaning, this is something we’ve never really done. It’s something that I know people out there do, because I saw it on Pinterest. So I know, there’s like check sheets and stuff. It’s not something I ever entertained in my life. And I don’t feel guilty about that the season of my life had been wildly demanding. And I wasn’t interested, I didn’t really want to. But now I’m kind of excited about it. And I will credit the Instagram account go clean. If you haven’t checked it out, I’ll link it in the show notes. They have such great videos that feel cathartic to watch of the deep cleaning they’re doing like me, and my kids watch them, me and Connor watch them. And we’re like all hesco by Auto Supplies and do all those things. looks amazing. So we’re just gonna be a little bit nerdy and glean some things that we’ve never clean before, like window tracks, and those really nasty areas of the baseboards. Maybe he’s cleaned them over the years, he probably has, but I don’t think I really have. You can tell who’s the clean one in our relationship. When it comes to kids. Over the years, we have really set a lot of goals and habits around being present, being proactive. And over the past year, our real big focus was to be positive, giving positive reinforcement and showing up with a lot of empathy. We have seen a huge change in our children’s response and processing abilities, when we show up with empathy, and if you want to hear a podcast episode on that, that’s Episode 84. I’ll link that in the show notes. And then this year as we’ve we still want to continue on with these things. We’re also going to add in my routine for family meetings. family meetings are something that we have done over the years, but there’s no routine there. They just happen when they happen. They usually happen when they need to happen. So we would like them to happen and be more fun and routine along the way. You can hear a podcast episode on that as well. I’ll link that one in the show notes. And then another thing that we say we want to do it’s kind of been on our mind but we’re like this year we’re scheduling it in is taking your kids out for hikes. So we did a bit last year. We did some geocaching that was really fun, but we want to be more intentional with it. And I really like the idea of combining this with our bestie family. So that now I get friend time I get family time and I get friend time it is accomplishing the vision of two areas of my life in one health. Over the years. We’ve been paying more attention to our wellness in our home. And just seeing what my mom has experienced in her own health has made me want to be really proactive. Used to be that I was scared and now I want to feel empowered to take care of my health. So over the years some things we’ve been working on is more movement more vegetables. Last year I worked a lot on Sleep, sleep health, good sleep hygiene. Going to bed

bit earlier, letting myself experience the fullness of sleep. And that’s been going really well. I think it really helped me show up better this past year. This year, I want to continue on more with regular exercise. I don’t want to get stuck in the all or nothing thinking about what exercise has to look like, I just want movement in my day. And another thing I added to my list this year is a really nourishing lunch, which is something I used to do often. But as I’ve gone gluten and mostly grain free over the years, I really struggled to feed myself well in the middle of the day. And when I don’t nourish myself throughout the day, I don’t show up well for the rest of it. So I pick up the kids from the bus and I’m hungry, they’re hungry. It feels like the day is just at risk of falling apart at the seams because I could just nourish myself I could feel so much better. So lunch is something that is on my list. It feels weird to be a 38 year old woman and be like I need to eat a better lunch. I’m going to add lunch to my yearly goals. But here we are guys, here we are. Some hobbies I want to do more of is getting outside playing the piano, I have this big project idea for our house, where I want to move our piano that’s in the basement upstairs and get it tuned. Because she has not been tuned in I don’t know ever my entire life. So let’s get that done. I have some goals around my daily devotions, reading books, I want to memorize more scripture. I have a lot of work goals. I’m really excited for this year at work, my list of what I want more of unless I was pretty big. And I am really excited about the things that are coming out for work this year. One is the life on purpose roadmap, walking you through all the nine areas of your life, all the excuses that we make that keep us from setting vision, setting values and taking action and getting yourself unstuck because that is one of the most common things that women tell me they struggle with. It’s like, Sure, I might know what I want. And I might set out priorities for my day. But I get derailed. so common, right. So I want to really coach you through that through this self paced course to take action and get yourself unstuck and keep showing up for that. The other one is the life on purpose Academy. I’ve been running it all last year, weekly group coaching calls, and this year to look a little bit different, where it’s going to be held in 10 week sessions. So for 10 weeks, every week, Thursday mornings, you come on for group coaching, you get coached on any issue. And if you’ve ever heard someone else get coached, you know how powerful it is, at just seeing how someone’s mind is working, how they’re showing up, you can see that reflected in your own life, you always walk away with something that you can apply to your own life. And I think one of the biggest things that we underestimate is you walk away feeling like I’m not alone. In the life on purpose Academy. As we’ve spent most of the year together, these weekly calls, moms are coming, sharing their issues, women are coming, sharing their issues, their struggles. And you know what I read in the comments, when I’m done the call and I load up that chat box is encouragement, like I thought I was the only one or I’m so glad that I’m not alone or like I can so relate that you really are not alone. And there is a place for you and a space for you where you can get support. And maybe the life on purpose Academy is that place for you. No matter where you find it. I just encourage you to invest yourself in a community and getting regular support this year, I’ll wrap up with some goals I have around finances. So finances is something that’s been tricky over the years because before I had children, and I had a career as a health inspector, I gave up that career after my second was born. So I did work for a little bit. But we went from dog double income, no kids for many years to stay at home mom, and one income. So over the years, we’ve really had to pay attention to our finances, it’s been a challenge. And this year, I really want to push debt free purchases, going debt free as much as possible. And one of the things that we also started last year, maybe the year before, was to track our spending in a really simple way. I found this really great video from fun, cheaper, free, I’m going to put that in the show notes as well. But basically we track every week we just write down our spending on groceries and other. And this year, I’m adding in some more columns, I want to get more detailed in what I’m tracking so that we know where our money is going. I know this episode is getting a little long, but I do want to wrap up with the questions that had been sent in to me. So one of the first ones is I would love to just not pick my values, but figure out what my values and vision God has for my life. I have a hard time figuring out how to do that. So as you guys might know, I am a Christian, but not all of you who listen are Christians. Either way, this is a question worth asking, How do I pick my values and vision? If you rely on any kind of faith structure in your life? The first answer is to pray about it. Pray over it asked God to come into that one of my most common prayers is I ask God to build up the life, build up the marriage, build up the business, build up the parenting that he wants for me, rather than what I want for me. So it is

kind of setting your intention, putting it out there, and then stepping back for a minute to make space for that to listen. And then trust. This is the hard part, we always question our motives. Is this what God wants of me? Or is this just me what I want of me? We’re constantly questioning our motives. But if you have prayed over it, if you have invited God into it, then you need to trust that he is in it. And practice discernment. How does this doubt feel? Is this doubt fearful and shame based? Or is it loving? Because we know that one comes from God and one doesn’t. So moving into a place where you can pick your values and set your vision is a lot of trust, wherever you put your trust in wherever you put your faith in setting those based on hope, and listening to yourself along the way. So acknowledging the doubts, they’re gonna be there and discerning over the doubts, but overall, pray about it, trust it, do it get started. A question I get often is how to get my husband involved. And I know there might be this misconception that Connor is a magical unicorn, who cleans our baseboards and sits down with me over tea, and we write out the vision and values for our life. And sometimes, like maybe some years, he does a bit of this, but maybe some years he doesn’t. And I don’t get tied to what he does, either way. So you can go back and listen to that episode we did together. I think it’s 47, where he talked about how he started doing this with me, it’s gonna surprise you, it wasn’t like he was super excited. And he wanted us to bond over it was it was kind of necessary. We were at a point in our marriage in our lives where things felt like they were falling apart. And he kind of said, Maybe this is the next step we need to take. So we sat down, it was super simple that year, and we said, what do we want to do with our kids this year? What’s important to us? And do you have any personal goals, it was super simple. So it’s over time, it’s evolved in something that’s a bit more and even this year, he did a lot less than he usually does. And that’s totally fine. It was more of me having the conversation with him on what I was thinking, asking him as input, my biggest piece of advice is to make it fun. Don’t put a lot of pressure on it, don’t tie a lot of meaning to if he does it and how interested he is. Maybe make a nice coffee, maybe make out a little bit on the coach. If you want this to be a casual conversation, then open it up and be like, I am wondering if you want to talk about this. So don’t make them feel like they are trapped into a situation where Tell me your goals, tell me your vision. And they’re like I don’t know, I never thought of.

And then I would say lay it all out, lay it all out for them what you’re expecting from the conversation, that you want to hear what they’re thinking you want to see if you have common goals. And you want them to do as much or as little as they want to do but you want to start that conversation in your marriage. starting small is a really great, great way to start. Like I said, we started with one shared topic, parenting, and we can focus on the shared topics even this year, we just focused on our shared topics. So parenting home, marriage and finances. Those are basically what we’re focusing on. You don’t have to do all of the things just start with one area. One area of your life what’s what do you want more of this year? What do you want less of this year? And regardless of what your partner chooses to do, just keep showing up for yourself and doing the work. You don’t have to be a bear about it. You don’t have to be a martyr for it. Do it because it’s what you want in your life. And you can let others choose what they want in their own life. Another great question I get is what planner do you use? And I would say all of them. Over the years I have used all of the planners. I bullet journal moleskin has a cool weekly journal. The Passion Planner. pipsqueaks has a great planner. Currently, I have a Happy Planner. And over the years, I’ve just tried different layouts, different ways that I like to see the day laid out, the week laid out. So I’ve just over the years tried them. And if it works, I keep it if it doesn’t, obviously I change it every year. So but I cheaped out this year, and I bought the $16 discount planner at winners. That’s how I ended up with the Happy Planner, and it’s great. But ultimately, the planner that works is the one that you use. So give it a real good solid, try and look at the workbook. If you have a life on purpose workbook as a place to get messy, make all the plans and then your planners where you get to dump it into. I feel overwhelmed with life and I don’t even know where to start. This is a really good question. And it’s something I can totally relate to overwhelm is your brain’s answer to not wanting to do the work of figuring things out. So to address that overwhelm, like if there’s just so much in your brains, like I don’t want to spend all this energy figuring out how to take this these big things and break them down. My first piece of advice is to do a brain dump, get everything out on paper, everything in your head. And then to keep it simple, I would just look at the nine areas of your life even just write them out on a sheet and give yourself a contentment reading how happy Am I in this area of my life on a scale of one to 10? What’s working here what isn’t working here. If you want to take an initial action you can start with

The easy fix. So maybe there’s something really simple in your home or in your parenting, or in your health, that would be an easy fix. That would be a great start. The other place to start is what’s the biggest challenge if you feel like there’s an area of your life that you really want to pay attention to this year, really want to dig into, start in that one area. Start in that one area, write out your vision for it, write out your values for it, just focus on that one area. I really liked the idea of just one thing. In the Facebook group, I recently asked, What’s your theme word for the year and some of us have theme words like trust and patience and wisdom and discipline. This is so great. This is essentially sending out your vision and values for the year. Just that one word, it’s going to set your intention in your direction for the whole year. You can check out the Facebook community group, I’ll link that in the show notes. It’s a really fun place to be all of this life on purpose. This is about doing the work of showing up for yourself. It’s not about overhauling 100% of your life. It’s about doing the small things that matter the most. So what should we do? What are those small things? Well, we need to do things that are in line with who we want to be and where we want to go.

Again, if you want support on this, check out the life on purpose roadmap self paced course, join us for a session a 10 week session in the life on purpose Academy. I would love to see you there and support you there. Have a great week.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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