How to set goals in the Bullet Journal

Goal setting has always been a passion of mine. When I started using my first Bullet journal back in 2015, I knew I had to incorporate goal setting in my journal, one way or the other. Here’s my process to set new goals in my Bullet journal.

Quarterly goals

Following the 12 week year method, I like to set quarterly goals, because its easier to keep the momentum going when you only have 90 days to accomplish a goal. Yearly resolutions tend to fail come February because we lose steam. Aiming for quarterly goals feel like a sprint, which keeps me motivated.

Start by looking back

Before I set new goals, I like to reflect on what I have accomplished in the past. One tool that I love to reflect on my accomplishments is the Level 10 Life exercise popularized by Hal Elrod, author of the Miracle Morning. I evaluate each area of my life, finances, career, relationships and so on on a scale of 1 to 10 and assess my current level of satisfaction. This paints a portrait of my current situation and lets me find areas of improvement. If you’d like to try it, I created a free printable that you can get here. Here’s my latest Level 10 Life spread :

Choose 3 goals

3 is a magic number. I feel that more than 3 goals can quickly become overwhelming. Reviewing my Level 10 Life spread, I select the 3 areas of my life that need the more work and select my goals accordingly. I do not necessarily select the three lowest areas, but the ones I feel I would benefit the most from improving. Thinking about each area, I come up with a specific action, habit or outcome that would improve my quality of life if I would achieve it. That’s how I set my goals.

Add your new habits and goals to your lists

If your new goals imply new habits to implement, add these to your habit tracker. You can create a new spread with your goals list and add any actions you need to take to achieve them. A goal without a plan is just a wish! If you need to take action on a specific date, add that to your future log, your monthly spread or your weekly schedule. Detail each next action you need to take and make sure to schedule them.

Review your goals each week

Part of my weekly review is a review of my goals. Each Friday afternoon, I track my progress for each of my current goals. At the moment, I plan on reading 100 books in 2019. I know that I have to read 25 books every quarter to reach my goal. Each week, I write down how many books I’ve read during the week and assess if I’m on track. That helps me focus my efforts for the next week. Reviewing my goals list every week allows me to keep them top of mind and maintain my momentum. Choose a day for your weekly review and make sure to put it on the calendar so that you don’t skip it.

Celebrate your accomplishments

One problem that I used to have was to set new goals as soon as I achieved them, but never taking the time to appreciate my successes. I was frenetically moving from one goal to the next, but feeling empty. I realized that I needed to take time to celebrate the little successes along the way. One way that I do that is by immortalizing the moment in my Bullet journal. I have a signifier especially for goals achieved, a little flag, that I include in my dailies along with a quick note about the goal I just met. When relevant, I print a photo with my Canon Selphy and include it in my spread. Here’s my entry for the last goal I met, hosting a metal concert with nearly 200 attendees last weekend :

Goal setting junkie as I am, I cannot wait for the next planning session at the end of the quarter to set my new goals! I like to do it during the last weekend of each season and I create a mini ritual each time. It really is thrilling! What is your goal setting process? What tools do you use to help you with your goal setting? Let me know in the comments below!

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