I have always been a huge proponent of setting goals, aiming high, and working hard to achieve them every day. But then life happened, as I’m sure it has with many others, and life events, raising a family, and just the day-to-day grind started to wear me out. And I honestly stopped writing down goals for a while because I didn’t want to let myself down. I still worked hard, I still aimed high, but I had no defined target. Guess what? That’s exactly what happened. I had some success, but I moved through life without clear purpose or direction on exactly what I wanted to accomplish.
I’ve tried many different goal setting processes and tactics throughout the years and there are plenty of good methods out there: writing down your goals every day, putting them on your bathroom mirror, journaling, smart phone apps, etc. It can get overwhelming just even considering all the options! And that’s when last year a friend of mine shared their goal secret with me when I inquired, which I tried in 2017 and worked beautifully. He just said “I wrote down some crazy big goals for me and my family and I stuck it on a white board in the house where everyone could see on a daily basis, especially me. And every time I reached a goal I just crossed it off the list.” So, in 2017 that’s exactly what I did. Simple and powerful – I wrote some simple, some practical, and then some big goals I wanted to accomplish in 2017 (like vacations/trips, professional goals, personal/family goals, and just things to finish in the house) and everyone saw it. It wasn’t pretty. It wasn’t eloquently stated. It had no pictures. And it was in many ways audacious (I even wrote “no crying” for my kids in 2017), but it got my attention every day and it even become a conversation piece for anyone visiting our home because I put it where everyone could see it – in the kitchen.
I saw our 2017 goal white board every morning when I got myself coffee, I saw it at dinner, and everyone else saw it as well. “Dad, when are we getting a mini-van – it says we're buying mom a min-van?” It held me accountable.
Then an amazing thing happened – we hit the first goal on the list and I felt accomplished because we crossed it off the list, and then I saw it crossed off every day after. It brought life and energy again to say – “You can do this.” “Look, you’ve already accomplished the first goal on your list – why not go after the rest,”…and off we were. We worked harder and with more purpose than ever before and we started hitting some big goals – my wife and I took a second honey moon after 11 years of marriage to Mexico, I sold 56 properties (to reach 100 homes sold in 2 years - my exact target), we finished projects in the house we had delayed for years, we bought a new vehicle and took a road trip to TN, we invested more in our business and in other people, and we took an amazing family vacation to Disney! Looking back, 2017 was one of the greatest years we’ve ever had and we did so much more that ended up not even being on the list. By Dec 31, 2017 we accomplished every single thing I had put on the list except for one.
So, my encouragement to you is if you’re ever felt down because you’re not on track or you’re worried about not reaching your target, set big goals anyway and remind yourself everyday what you’re trying to accomplish. Otherwise, despite working hard, you may end up wandering aimlessly without as much purpose and energy as you could. I didn’t reach all of my goals last year, but I ended up accomplishing way more than if I hadn’t defined and set big targets. And maybe, like me, you just need a jump start and to try a new method. Set goals, aim high, and get after 2018. I know you can do it. Here’s to an amazing year ahead!
-Aaron Kohlmeier, Welcome Home Real Estate Group