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white ceramic mug on table Photo by Danielle MacInnes on UnsplashThe new year is just around the corner. Are you ready to welcome 2019? Before that, take this moment to celebrate your 2018 achievements. Have you reached your 2018 goals? Great! But no worries if you fell short of your targets this year, it’s okay (no judgment).

For the first few months of my blogging and VA business, I only used a journal, my smartphone’s calendar and Evernote in managing my projects. I thought that was enough but as I acquired two additional clients this month I realized that I need another project management tool to organize my tasks and maximize my productivity.

As a social media VA to two clients with a freelance writing project on the side and this blog, I need to stay super organized. And the first step to do just that is to set an attainable daily, weekly and monthly goals.

Want to have your best year ever? Claim 2019 as your year with these secret sauce to successful goal setting.

  1. Define and write down your why. Figure out what you really want and write it down. Do you want to change career but are afraid of the risks and failures? Perhaps you want to travel around the world but don’t have the time and resources? What is your purpose? Be specific of what you want and know why you really want it.

  2. Go into detail. Identify your goal and get absolutely clear on it. Set 7 to 10 goals at a time. Do you have set goals already? Now let yourself picture it. Visualization is important. Similarly, In order for you to reach your goals, you first need to believe.

  3. Achieve those goals before setting more. Just like climbing the stairs, before you reach the top you need to go through the first few steps, right? Don’t take shortcuts or you’ll fall down. Likewise, don’t overwhelm yourself with so many goals. Take one step at a time.

  4. Don’t let your unconscious mind hold you back from achieving your goals. Train your mind to conquer your fears. It’s worth noting that your unconscious mind will prevent you by all means, because one of its main objectives is to protect us from all the kinds of threat. It will fight anything that appears to be a threat like pain and conflict. Nevertheless, risks and failures are inevitable especially when trying new things. So, set your mind to win!

  5. Review your goals at regular intervals. Goals need to be reviewed and evaluated once in a while. Remember, even small things count, so celebrate your wins, reward yourself whenever you reach a certain milestone and continue to brainstorm new ideas.

Goal setting for 2019 using free project management tools

Just recently I signed up for Trello and I’m loving it so far. If you’re like me who loves to picture out daily projects or personal life goals I’m sure you’ll love it too. With Trello I am now able to organize my blogging, VA, freelance writing and even my personal projects. Trello is great for visual planning. Asana and Todoist are also some of the tools I’m considering for my projects.

I have been using Todoist for a while now since it’s the project management tool that one of my clients is using. This to-do list app is easy to use with a clean UI.

If you are not sure what tool will fit your team or business needs I recommend you sign up for the free plan of these tools and try it out for yourself.

How to stay productive while working from home

Productivity and time management is crucial when you are working from home. With all the distractions around, you need to balance your time with the demands of your work, family and personal life.

Work, Play, Fit, Push. Work hard, play harder. In order to stay productive, you need to take care of yourself first. Stay fit even if it’s tempting to cheat with your workout schedule sometimes. I feel ya! I’m also guilty of this.

Allow yourself some ‘me time’ to cultivate your passions or hobbies. Like for example, I love learning a new language like Mandarin, reading books, playing the piano and traveling. So I make sure to set some time for those things.

Sometimes we all need a little push to try new things and face our fears, do that once in a while. But don’t forget to give yourself a break to avoid burn out.

FINAL TAKEAWAY

You don’t need to wait for the new year to start implementing your plans and making positive changes. Succinctly, finish this year strong and with an expectant heart and a winning mindset to embrace the challenges and opportunities the new year will bring.

What are you looking forward to the most in 2019?

Categories: Freelancing

Precious Gan

Precious Grace Gan is a spunky virtual assistant and lifestyle blogger. She hopes to inspire creative entrepreneurs and helps busy small business owners. Precious loves to share her learnings having transitioned from years on the corporate world into the digital space...read more. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.

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