Anyone can set goals. But if you are looking to find balance and fulfillment, it’s important to ensure that you’re setting goals intentionally. This means setting goals that align with your values, passions, and strengths – and ultimately your top priorities in life.

While you could set one goal for a certain aspect of your life, a better option is to set goals carefully and strategically with the big picture in mind. In most cases, this means setting not just one but a series of goals – each pertaining to different areas of your life and quite possibly supporting one another to achieve your overarching vision of living a well-designed life.

Today, we’re continuing our series on Living With Intention (find the first post, the second post, and the third post here). We’ll uncover the importance of setting the right goals this year – ones that support being more intentional with your time and finding balance.

To do this, we suggest setting goals across the five most important areas of life – in a specific order of priority. To get started, think about the progress that you’d like to see in each of the areas below and then map it out for your year (either in your Day Designer planner or on this free printable).

1. Your Health and Happiness

Are you prioritizing your health and happiness? You should be! But sadly, all too often we tend to push our own needs aside. If we don’t prioritize our own needs and happiness, we’ll end up feeling burnt out, run ragged, and worn down. When this happens, no one wins – since in the end, we have nothing left to share with others!

Make sure you’re taking time to put your needs first and foremost. Practice good self-care and avoid packing your schedule too full, to the point where it starts to take a toll on your energy and enjoyment of life.

Prioritize your needs, carve out time to relax and spend on things that you enjoy, and make no apologies for it! This comes first.

2. Your Relationships

Your relationships – your family and your friends – matter. So make sure you’re prioritizing the ones who mean the most to you! Take time to connect with friends that you haven’t seen for a while, and pick up the phone and call your parents or extended family members. You’ll feel better and more fulfilled for it, and your loved ones will too!

Set goals that will help you connect with the people who mean the most to you.

3. Your Personal Development

Never stop growing! Personal development is vital – and isn’t something that should end when you graduate. This year, why not resolve to develop a new skill or learn something new? Read books on topics that interest you, enroll in a class at the community college, join a photography workshop, or explore your creative side with an art class.

Whatever it is that you’re interested in, spending time learning or improving your skills will help you to develop and grow – and constantly propel you forward in life.

4. Your Time and Money

Where are your resources going? Time and money are two things that are in limited supply, so ensure that you’re managing your resources wisely!

Where would you like to spend more time this year? Where might you be able to spend less money this year? Or is there a goal that you’d like to reach financially? Perhaps pay off credit card debt, or maybe you could save up for a down payment on a home? Whatever it is, be sure to jot it down so you can start working towards it.

5. Your Job or Career

Finally, your job, career, or community involvement is important too! And yes, being a stay-at-home mom totally counts! Round out your goal-setting session by setting goals for this area of your life to make it what you want it to be – and don’t forget to keep balance in mind.

You’ll notice that we’ve listed this one last! Yet often, people unintentionally let this area come first. This happens as a result of your deadlines at work taking center stage, your children constantly calling for your attention, your volunteer commitments taking more time than you imagined, and so on.

While this area of life is truly important – and might feel like the biggest area of your life – it’s important to remember that when the other areas come first, this area will fall into place more naturally. For example…

When you’re getting proper rest, you’ll have more energy for your tasks at hand. When you’re feeling fulfilled from laughing with your loved ones, some of your stress will subside. When you’re constantly improving yourself, you’ll feel more confident as you go about your day. When you’re managing your time and money wisely, you’ll find more success!

• • •

If you’d like to start setting goals that you can stick with – ones that leave you feeling motivated and alive, rather than drained and exhausted – then it’s important to ensure that you’re living with intention and finding balance across all sectors of your life. You’ll feel more fulfilled and happier as a result!

Stay tuned! Next week, we’ll guide you through turning your goals into monthly actions, weekly routines, and daily habits – helping you create goals that are not only achievable but ones that stick.

What are your goals for 2021?

A Day Designer planning system is your tool for mapping out your big-picture goals and carving out time in your schedule for the things that matter most. Choose your 2021 Flagship Planner today!