It’s interesting how a lot of young people got interested in our family goal setting activity. It might sound like a nerdy thing to do, but it didn’t start as such.
Back in the day when I was a young mom raising young boys, my husband, Marvin, and I decided to make the boys become more aware of the true meaning of Christmas and not be too distracted with Santa Claus. I do not have anything against the bearded man in red suit but no Santa and Tooth Fairy traditions for our sons while growing up. (You can find the reason in this article – Do you make your kids believe in Santa Claus?) 😊
They grew up knowing that Christmas was a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ (which by the way most likely did not happen in December, but that’s another story). Our Christmas lights spelled “Happy birthday Jesus!” and another one outlining the belen – baby Jesus with Joseph and Mary.
When our youngest, Anton, was about four or five, we started a tradition of gift-giving to the birthday celebrator, and since Jesus doesn’t need anything material, it was more like a sharing of how we will improve ourselves to be more pleasing to Him. I remember our oldest, Martin, saying, “My gift for Jesus this Christmas is to be a better kuya to Enrique and Anton. I will still discipline you especially if Papa and Mama are away, but I will be less masungit!” 😊
Family goal setting evolved
As the boys grew up, we started putting a structure to our goal setting. There was one time when Marvin was playing around with his new recorder. I think at that time, not all phones had audio recorders yet so I gave him that gift. He started recording our yearend meeting jokingly imitating Shareholders Meetings, “I would like to call the meeting to order. Is there a quorum?” This recording became the basis of the “minutes of the meeting” prepared by the “secretary” assigned during that meeting. 😊 And from then on, it had become a slightly structured family goal-setting. But don’t get me wrong, when I say structured, it’s a relaxed atmosphere of sharing, usually inside a room sitting on comfy chairs, sometimes on the bed, with stories in between, no more audio recording, but still with an assigned secretary.
Every yearend after Christmas and before New Year we go to a place we have not been to together as a family. We experience the place together then allot one half day for this goal setting activity. We actually give ourselves ratings (0-10)!
To answer a few requests to share our goal-setting template/structure, here it is.
Steps in our Goal Setting
- Start with your Core Values. Since goals are made in order to actualize your true and best self, it is important that you first know what your core values are. Core values are what we hold dear to our hearts. They are what we stand for. We have to make it clear that values are not material things (such as dream house or dream car) but principles that we are willing to sacrifice for, and to some, even willing to die for. Examples are freedom, family, security, relationships, spirituality, education, loyalty, honesty, reliability, etc.
- State your audacious dream. Given your core values, what is your audacious dream? Do you want to become the youngest CEO? The most sought after IT professional? Your audacious dream should be aligned with your core values. If you want to be the youngest CEO, is your company providing products and services that help fulfill any of your values in step one? If you’re the most sought after IT professional, are the programs you design instrumental in satisfying your core values?
- What are your long-term goals? What kind of person do you want to be? So this is now a refinement of your audacious dream. It will now state specific aspects of your life. It will now include the personal, occupational, social, spiritual aspects. When coming up with your long-term goals, state in the present tense so that you can now identify with the person that you want to be. Taking off from Step 2, it would include things like: I am a respected IT professional contributing to the development of… (indicate what core values your product/service helps fulfill). I am a multi-millionaire or billionaire. I am surrounded with my loving family (indicate how many children you want to have). I contribute to society by… (write specific actions). I take good care of my and my family’s health. You may ask, “Why should I state this part in the present tense instead of the future tense?” It’s because being clear with our identity is very important. If we say “I am __________” we are already owning that persona and this is what will make it easier for us to do the things consistent with that identity.
- Set your 3-year goals. Why 3 years? Because the period is not too long that you will be prone to procrastinate, nor too short that you cannot accomplish anything meaningful. If you are to become a sought after IT professional or the youngest CEO, what rank should you have in three years? If you were to become a multi-millionaire or billionaire, how much should you already have in three years?
- Set your Checklist for the year. You now break down your 3-year goals into annual goals. These are your key results for the year. If among your long-term goals is to be healthy, what waistline should you have by the end of 2019? What level of relationship should you have with your long-time friend if one of your goals is to have a family of your own? What courses, workshops should you finish during the year in order to enhance your skills? What total net asset value should your Balance Sheet show by yearend?
- Design your winning habits. “The devil is in the details.” We may have the best and loftiest dreams and intentions but if we do not design our daily habits, all will just be what we call “drawing!” 😔 The items in this list may look like they are not directly related to your goals, but these are the small things that if done everyday will make you tick your 2019 Checklist.
Example of designing a good habit. I have always found it cumbersome to do my daily exercise of walking/running on the treadmill and lifting light weights. It is always a struggle for me in the morning to do it and my mind is always quick to give myself an alibi why it’s okay to miss it just this day. I have recently found a way to design a habit that would make it easy and automatic for me to do my exercise everyday. At night I turn my cellphone to airplane mode at 10:30pm then put it in my closet (not anymore on my bedside table where I used to put it) right next to my rubber shoes and work-out clothes. In the morning, I can only turn on my phone after I’ve put on my shoes and work-out clothes. The question is not anymore, “Do I work out today or not?” It’s do I want to turn on my cellphone?” And since the answer is a definite yes, I now put on my rubber shoes and work-out clothes automatically. After I turn on my cellphone, it has become automatic to proceed to the treadmill and begin exercising, for I will now feel a bit stupid if I don’t, hahaha! I have taken away the burden on my self-discipline and will power to decide to do the right thing everyday because I have bundled a key action to something that I will definitely do everyday. This way, exercise has become automatic everyday! I’m sure you can also design something like this in order to make that important habit that you’ve always struggled with. 😊
I hope you have been inspired to do your own goal setting whether by yourself, or with your family. Doing it with your family helps because you now have both accountability and support.
If you wish to hear more about this topic, click MomAndSonPodcast Ep. 2 Goal Setting, a weekly podcast with my son Anton available on Spotify, Soundcloud, and Buzzsprout. You’ll hear valuable insights from a millennial’s point of view about this topic.
- Our Mom and Son Podcast is NOW EVERY WEEK! Listen to our second episode where we talk about goal setting. Here we share the steps we go through to make our goals meaningful and achievable. Join us by clicking any of these links: click MomAndSonPodcast Ep. 2 Goal Setting, available on Spotify, Soundcloud, and Buzzsprout.
- Watch out for our FQwentuhan this Friday (January 18, 2019) with sports television and news anchor, Migs Bustos! He’ll share with us his FQripot tips (especially when it comes to your own wedding) and his childhood money memory. Full episode will be uploaded in FQ Mom Facebook page and Youtube account.
- Thanks to those who already bought the FQ Book, especially to those who took the time out to send me their feedback. Your feedback is food for my soul. To those who have not gotten their copy yet, here’s a short preview of FQ: The nth Intelligence
You may now purchase the book in major bookstores, or if you want autographed copies, please go to FQ Mom FB page (click SHOP), or FQMom.com (click BOOKS), or email us at FQMomm@gmail.com
- Want to know where your FQ stands? Take the FQ Test Challenge now! Click link. http://rebrand.ly/FQTest
Rose Fres Fausto is a speaker and author of bestselling books Raising Pinoy Boys and The Retelling of The Richest Man in Babylon (English and Filipino versions). Click this link to read samples – Books of FQ Mom. She is a Behavioral Economist, Certified Gallup Strengths Coach and the grand prize winner of the first Sinag Financial Literacy Digital Journalism Awards. Follow her on Facebook & YouTube as FQ Mom, and Twitter & Instagram as theFQMom. Her latest book is FQ: The nth Intelligence.
ATTRIBUTIONS: Photo from Vivid Image (https://vimm.com/smart-goal-setting/), modified and used to help deliver the message of the article.