Happy new month, & happy almost summer (but as far as I’m concerned, it’s already summer!)
I’ve always loved summer because these three months have always been full of endless possibilities. With long days, gorgeous nights, less responsibilities and a chance to craft the days you want – no other season seems quite as magical as summer.
My Summer Goals
You already know I love all things goal setting. For 2018, I decided to take my goals a quarter at a time and that’s being going really well. But as June approached, I realized I wanted to do something a little bit different for the months of summer. So similar to quarter goals – it’s still three months. But with the extra motivation and energy I have in the summer, I decided to have some super focused and high impact goals that would set me up for an amazing rest of the year and put me in a position to take my dreams to the next level.
So if all goes according to plan, it means I have the next three months to GO HARD before my next phase of life in the fall, so of course I want to make the very most of these magical weeks.
Working with my older brother, I broke my summer down into two week increments of highly focused work on a few specific projects. These are known as sprints. And I am SO excited to buckle down and GET SH*T DONE!!
So here are the 6 categories I’ll be focusing on this summer, within each category, there are different tasks and projects I’ll be working on, depending on which sprint I’m on.
1. Have a clear and consistent brand across the web
With this, I want to spruce up my blog and relaunch my portfolio website; and I also want to be much more consistent with blogging in general. I have over 88 blog posts written or outlined, so this summer I just want to work on pushing them out. I’ll also ensure that my social media presence is uniform across the web.
2. Create 2 to 3 solid income streams before fall.
So right now I’m working with two incredible clients on their digital marketing strategies. I want to ensure I give them the best quality work and also ensure I get can even higher paying clients by this fall. Finally, my brother and I are working on a few projects that will hopefully get us some passive income by this fall – what could be better than that?
3. Finally lose that college weight and get the flat tummy
So I’ll be doing different exercise and diet experiments per sprint to lose some weight that I’ve gained over the years from not doing high school sports, traveling around the world and eating whatever I wanted and just general laziness.
4. Reading a bible chapter daily
Been trying to do this for a while, but I finally have an accountability partner!
5. Building my skills in several areas.
So there are a few skills that I want to learnt o make me a better digital marketer, help me with my brand, and also help me launch my upcoming projects or move the needle for my next large goals. One of these is relearning and deep diving some social media platforms. So for example, I’ll take about 2 weeks (one Sprint) to learn all I can about Pintrest and then move on. One big thing here is also getting faster at photo-editing. It’s the number one things keeping me from pushing out more blog posts, so I’ll be spending 25 minutes a day (and working my way up) each day for this whole summer.
6. Launch and wrap up several projects that strengthen my brand.
And finally, I plan to work hard on some other projects I’m working on this summer like the Afropolitan Central podcast with Nana Mensah. Let me know if you’ve listened to it and what your thoughts are!
How to Create Your Own Summer Goals
Those are my goals for this summer and I’m so excited about them. But with each thing I do, I want to work hard to not only inspire others to do the same, but also show them the how. So how can you create your own summer goals?
Step 1: Decide where you want to be by the end of the summer. What kind of person can you realistically evolve into within the next 3 months?
For me, I wrote:
“By the end of the summer, I want to feel disciplined, accomplished & stronger in my faith. I want to use this summer to set myself up for a successful fall. ”
This statement has been my guiding mantra and each goal I set, I use this statement as the yardstick by which it is measured. For example, goal one of a clear and consistent brand – by fall, I wouldn’t have to keep tweaking and deciding what to post where. I could start automating that and focus on other goals. Goal 2 is pretty obvious. Goals 3 and 4, would ensure that I have the energy, discipline and mental strength to get through my fall plans and the accomplish things I’ve been trying to do for a while. Goal 5 will make me better at the projects I have to do for my clients and for myself, and goal 6 are all projects that lead directly to strengthening my brand (so goal 1).
Step 2: Write down the various things that need to be accomplished to make those goals happen.
So I have 6 main goals, but under each one, I know there are specific tasks and projects I need to do to make them a reality. Goal 1 requires I clean up my two websites, and put out consistent content for my brand to be obvious and searchable.
In this step, you can also write down other projects you might want to work on and see if you can fit them into your categories above, or if you will create a new category for miscellaneous projects, or if you will just shelf it for now. For more help on breaking down goals, I created this post that many people have found really useful.
Step 3: Decide what you WON’T be working on.
This is almost just as important as what you will work on! Summer is short and it will speed past you; so to ensure your work truly is focused, decide what things you won’t work on. For example, writing for other platforms is a really interesting thing I want to do more of and I’ve done in the past. It’s even important to building my brand. But I chose to shelf it for this summer because it’s quite time consuming to think of what to write for other platforms, pitch to them and then negotiate back and forth. My hope is that by the fall, I’ll have a really strong brand presence, that the pitching portion will be just a bit easier. Or maybe brands will even seek me out to write for them. I’m also not working on language study (although I always want to get better at French, but not this summer). I have a few others, but hope this give you an idea.
Remember this isn’t a “I’m never going to work on it” (although it could be). It’s a “I’m not going to work on it THIS summer.” Streamline and focus.
So what can you eliminate from your to-do list for now?
Step 4: Break them down even more
So now you have the categories you want to work on and the projects that will make that happen. Now it’s time to break those projects down into tasks and decide what part of the summer you want to do them in. You can read a little bit more about sprints here. But the essential thing to understand is that it’s two weeks of highly focused work. This really helped me visualize my summer, because I tend to save month goals until the last week of the month. But now I know exactly which part of the month I’m working on certain things.
Step 5: Tracking and Accountability Method
So great! You just spent all this time writing down all your goals and when you will do them. But how do you actually ensure you are achieving them? Tracking of course! And letting those close to you in your life know exactly what you are doing. I’m using my bullet journal for most of my tracking. I created new layouts that are specific to this summer. Mayowa is using excel to do his tracking, but he’s a more digital person that I am. So whatever method works best for you – as long as you know you will use it!
All the planning, spreadsheets and accountability partners in the world mean nothing unless you actually get up each morning with the resolve to crush your goals.
Bonus Step: JUST DO IT
All the planning, spreadsheets and accountability partners in the world mean nothing unless you actually get up each morning with the resolve to crush your goals. You have to wake up determined and ready to work on these projects. Note that I didn’t say excited or motivated. Determination and preparedness go beyond those things. Determination breeds discipline – which is the secret sauce that you need to accomplish your goals. Even days when you are not in the mood, if you can set a timer for 25 minutes to just work on ONE thing (i.e. photoediting, like I mentioned), you will be surprised how much you get done this summer! And then if you prepare your work-space and to do list the night before – you have that much more impact and chance at success.
Don’t get so bogged down in steps 3-5, because the first two steps and this bonus step are the key to having your best summer yet!
There you have it! My goals and everything you need to create your own kickass summer goals! Please let me know if you have any questions – I love talking about goal setting and productivity tips! Feel free to share your goals below so that we can keep each other accountable!
P.S. Those subscribed to my blog got a little bit of the background and necessity for this summer being amazing about two days ago. They also got tips on failing forward and resources for bouncing back and moving ahead. So if you missed it and want more in-depth information about these tips and the life updates that lead to them, make sure you are subscribed to the blog.