My running group came up with this fun idea to close out 2020 and ring in 2021: on New Year's Eve, we would run 20.21 miles and wear shirts that say “hello 2021” on the front and “goodbye 2020” on the back.
Unfortunately, I won't be running with them as I injured my foot in mid-November and, while I am bummed, that's kind of indicative of 2020 isn't it? (By the way, I'll be cycling the 20.21 route twice instead.)
No matter what intentions or goals we set for ourselves, things don't always go as planned, especially not this year.
We can never predict the future but we CAN go into a new year/new era setting some intentions and goals to provide some sense of direction.
I like to think of intentions as the “how” I want to go about achieving my goals – with what spirit and attitude. The goal is the "what" I want to achieve.
I was introduced to intention setting about five years ago when I was training to run the New York City marathon. That year, I chose “GRATEFUL” as my intention and had it printed on a MyIntent bracelet. I tried to approach everything with a lens of gratitude as a way to achieve the goals I set out, including my training and race day.
Goals are almost easier to set than intentions. We are accustomed to using a S.M.A.R.T framework and I like my goals to push me to my edges a bit. If it's somewhat scary, it's a worthy goal. I organize my goals into three categories: business, athletic and personal.
I write my annual goals and intention on a whiteboard above my desk and structure my weekly and daily activities to ensure I'm working toward direction.
Each evening, I look at my weekly goals, what I accomplished that day, how my intention showed up and then I make plan for the next day. It's so simple and effective.
An equivalent process can be brought into any organization with added sophistication (if needed - avoid the temptation to overcomplicate it!). Add in 3-5 measures of success or KPIs to track and put a system and process in place to monitor your progress on a regular and consistent basis, and you are on your way. Let me know if you need help. I love this stuff.
I'm still working on my 2021 goals and intention but they will likely have a similar structure as 2020: business, athletic and something around personal development and my book. I'll be sure and share them when I've landed them so you all can help hold me accountable.
Thank you 2020 for all that you have brought us and here's to new intentions and goals in 2021.