Throughout this past month we’ve shared some of our top goal-setting tips for each important area of your life as part of our “Creating Goals to Cultivate Balance” series. Today we want to help you pull it all together.

In case you missed the previous posts in this series, you can find them all here. Simply start at the bottom and work your way up!

Hopefully, you’ve read and understood the value of not just setting any old goals (or worse—unintentional resolutions that don’t align with the life you’ve designed), and instead are focused on creating goals with intention and purpose in every area of your life. Our goal today is to help you create goals that leave you with a feeling of balance, purpose, and motivation to succeed.

So, let’s get started! Here are five ways to create intentional, balanced goals in every major area of your life:

Assess the Present

Start by assessing each of the five areas we’ve outlined in this series: yourself, your people, your heart, your resources, and your career. If you have to give yourself a grade, how would you score in each? As always, this is not about making yourself feel bad. It’s really quite natural to have a higher score in some life categories than others. That’s exactly why it’s so important to be proactive about creating better balance. In this step, we’re just making an honest assessment of each area, and figuring out which areas of your life need more support than others. Because creating balance doesn’t necessarily mean giving equal focus to every area of your life; instead, it often means giving appropriate focus to the areas of your life that need it most. Which areas would that be for you?

Brainstorm Balance

Now that you know which area of your life needs a little TLC, consider what “balance” actually looks like there. If you know your budget is solid but your self-care needs work, what would it look like to bring your self-care back into balance with the rest of your life? What would you be doing? How would you feel? Who would you surround yourself with? Get clear on your vision of balance in the areas of your life that need it most. As we’ve said before, the ideal outcome of setting goals is not to reach some arbitrary mark that’s based on what you think you should do—or what everyone else is doing. You are an intentional person who is designing the best life for you. If you can get really clear on what that best life looks like, you’ll be able to set the best goals to help you get there.

Set Your Goals

If you’ve been a Day Designer fan for awhile, you’ve likely heard us talking about balanced goals—they’re the foundation upon which we selected each of the five main areas of your life highlighted in our series this month! Take a look at the vision you created in the last step, and set goals with heart and intention to help you get there. Keep in mind the five areas of your life and throughout this blog series—you; your people; your attitude and academics; your time, money and energy; and your career—in that order of priority! Then, write your goals down in your Day Designer—every single day, if possible. A recent study showed that writing goals down and reviewing them on a regular basis made participants 42% more likely to achieve them.

Create a Plan of Action

We’ve mentioned this before in this series, but it bears repeating: It’s not enough to just set your goals. You’ve got to prepare a plan if you want to achieve them! Create an action plan that breaks your goals down into small, specific, and incremental steps; plan solutions to potential obstacles; and create daily action steps that you can add to your planner. Goal-setting and goal-achieving aren’t nearly as overwhelming when you’ve broken them down and planned for potential problems. Armed with a plan of action—and all of the additional tips shared throughout this series—you’ll be prepared and confident when it comes to making your goals you set out to achieve into a reality.

Continue to Check-In

Remember that assessment you did at the beginning of this exercise? Don’t just do it once, and assume you’re set for life. The reality is that things will start to get out of balance once again—it happens to the best of us! While your career may be rockin’ right now, it may lose some mojo in a month or two. Or you may feel that your relationship is healthy and solid right now, but that doesn’t mean you should take your attention off keeping it that way. Plan for a regular check-in and assessment to make sure you’re staying in balance. And write it down in your Day Designer so you don’t forget! Tweak your goals—and the energy you put toward achieving them—every month or so to make sure your focus is on track. You’ll soon find that you’re reaching goals and feeling that (seemingly elusive) life balance in no time.

Which area of your life needs your focus to get back into balance? What intentional goals are you setting in the next month to help you get there? Share your experience with us in the comments below!

Thank you for tuning into our “Creating Goals to Cultivate Balance” blog series. Day Designer was designed with these very principles in mind. Choose your daily planner and get started on setting balanced goals and working to achieve them today!