Summer for professional women can mean a lot of things: vacations, juggling kids’ uncertain schedules, end of fiscal years, end of second quarters. Depending on our particular season of life, we all seem to be in difference places during the summer. Regardless of where we find ourselves today, each of us is arriving at the halfway point of the calendar year.
Sitting here in the midst of the oppressive Mississippi heat, it’s hard to recall back to January. However, if you think long and hard enough, you probably set some goals, professional or personal, at the beginning of the year. Perhaps now is a good time to take stock of the goals we set and the progress we’ve made.
TRACK YOUR PROGRESS
The first step is being honest with yourself and truly analyzing the progress you’ve made. This answer could very easily be “none”! We all know the feeling of getting motivated and setting the bar high. Then, suddenly, life gets in the way and the goals you set get pushed to the back burner. Use this opportunity to be completely honest with yourself about where you stand with your goals.
ASSESS YOUR TECHNIQUE
If you feel like you’re failing at meeting your goals, it often has more to do with your technique than the actual goal. Pay attention to what you did differently when you did make progress toward your goal. Did it require extra time at the office or waking up earlier? These small details combined with also knowing what obstacles cause you distraction from your goals will create a self-awareness and road map toward your goals. Striving for something you’ve never accomplished before is going to take time and effort you’ve never given before.
CUT YOURSELF A BREAK
It’s easy to grow discouraged and toss our goals out the window completely. Cut yourself some slack. As professional women, we are juggling a dozen different tasks and commitments and running a million different directions, all while trying to hold it together and pretend it’s effortless. It’s ok to not match up to where you wanted to be at this point in the year. Part of being able to successfully reach your goals is being able to adapt to changes needing to be made to get there. Whether it’s giving yourself more time or setting smaller goals that feel easier to tackle, make your goals something that feel attainable and that you’re excited to take on.
Use what’s left of this summer to think about how far you’ve come in 2019 and where you want to go professionally and personally over the next five months and beyond. “There’s no time like the present” is incredibly cliché and overused, but maybe there’s a reason for that. It can feel like we’re in a constant state of looking up and exclaiming, “where has this spring gone?”, “June just flew by.” Perhaps before the rest of the year flies by, we should create some time to track our progress and set a path for the rest of the year.