Goal Setting For Your Work From Home LifestyleDo you have a clearly defined goals list? Do you know how to get from where you are to where you want to be? What are your current and future plans to follow your dreams and work at home?Knowing these answers is critical to setting yourself up for work from home success.A work at home career is just like any other endeavor. It takes focus and constant attention on all the tiny little details to succeed in the long term. And figuring out what it really takes for your personal situation means you need to set goals for now and in the future.Goals are critical to help you get from where you are now to where you want to be. How many times have you consulted a roadmap when traveling in an unfamiliar area? Its even more important to have a life roadmap.Begin with the end in mind. Imagine a vivid picture of what your ideal lifestyle will be. Will you be working for your current employer with a part time work at home arrangement? Or perhaps theres the entrepreneur inside you who wants to start a home based business. Really getting what you want all starts with a vision. A picture is worth so much more than a thousand words. Imagine a moment or experience that represents what you want to accomplish. My original work at home vision was sparked by a paragraph I read in Steve Slaunwhites excellent Start & Run A Copywriting Business. The author described what it was like watching the first winter snow fall from his cozy home office window as he worked on a challenging copywriting assignment. I wanted that experience too and couldnt get the picture of it out of my mind. And less than a year later I lived it! It was the most beautiful snow storm ever.Once you have a vision in your mind its time to write down clear, measurable and actionable goals to drive you forward. Measurable goals have a hard deadline yep, its work too, just like all the other stuff you already have going on, but the payoff is in the promise of a happier and healthier you.Setting Achievable GoalsThe trick with setting achievable goals is to create goals that you can actually accomplish in a reasonable amount of time. Sure, you should also set stretch goals that really test your limits, but they should not be the majority of your list.Most workable goals are set in 3, 6 and 12-month timeframes. Anything sooner and you cant get much done; anything later is hard to predict that far out into the future. But you can easily map out your desired outcomes over the next few months or year with a little upfront thought and planning.Your goals should include what you want personally, professionally, physically, spiritually, socially, and specify what you want to contribute to your family, community, or the world. Each goal should be stated in the positive and have a specific, measurable outcome.Here are some examples:1. Physical: To weigh 125 lbs. or less by 5pm September 18, 2008.2. Personal: To have a date night with my husband every other weekend, starting on March 1, 2008.3. Professional: To get my first paid freelance copywriting assignment by noon on April 30, 2008.Do you see the power in these statements? They are specific, measurable, actionable and have clear outcomes. Weaker goal statements include things like Get back in shape, Spend quality time with hubbby, or find a freelance gig. Dont sell yourself short. Clearly articulated goals are much easier to accomplish and theyll build your confidence quickly.Please dont make goal setting something you only do on New Years Eve. Your written goals list should be reviewed every day and revised every three months or so until you achieve them or decide to change direction.Keep your goals list in a visible location where youll look at it everyday. Keep it on your bureau, in your wallet, or taped to the mirror in your bathroom. Constant attention to your goals will keep them front and center in your mind.Measuring SuccessThe easiest way to measure success when it comes to goal setting is looking at the results. You either did it or you didnt. Thats why setting a date and time for completion is so critical. Its the true measuring stick. You cant make excuses to a clock and a calendar.Above all, goal setting shouldnt be another thing that adds to your stress pile. Remember how important this exercise is to your eventual freedom from the 9-5 grind. You have to want it badly enough to make it happen. And you can do it but you have to stick with it even when youre exhausted, disappointed, or otherwise distracted. Even during these times you have to trust that your new work at home lifestyle is the right choice.So commit to your goals list today. Envision your life the way you want it and get it down on paper with some hard deadlines. Then look at your list every day and try to make a little bit of progress. Even just 15 minutes a day dedicated towards your goals can really catapult you into your dreams over time.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mary Shaw is a part time work at home mom and the author of The Mommy Track: How To Live A Full Time Life On Part Time Income.
Get a free chapter at www.themommytrack.net/chapter1.html