Monday Motivation is a new feature that runs — surprise! — on Mondays, as a way to keep you, me and all of us, inspired and working toward our goals. Let’s make this a great week!
I beyond-love planning. It makes me giddy. The possibilities, the details, the lists, the organization. When I’ve set and achieved my weekly plan, I feel free to enjoy my weekends stress-, work- and worry-free.
I do struggle sometimes with follow-through. Sometimes my planning “eyes” are bigger than my doing “stomach”.
To keep me on task, therefore, I’ve created this weekly plan. Feel free to tweak it so it works for you. (Need a Monday-morning soundtrack? Try one of these playlists!)
Before we get to the weekly plan, here are a few tips to help you succeed:
- Make your goals specific, measurable and attainable. Your dream may be to “be a better person”, but how will you know if you are? So instead of “Be a better person”, decide what that looks like for you this week. For example: “Finish writing those thank-you notes, do three acts of random kindness this week, and get halfway through ‘The Autobiography of Malcolm X’ by Friday.”)
- Have an accountability buddy, someone you can tell, every week, what your goal is. He or she doesn’t have to do anything beyond encouragement. Accountability just keeps you on track.
- Whenever possible, have next week’s goal figured out the Friday before. That gives you time to do any prep work, such as sending out an email or two on Friday or over the weekend. (Hurrah for getting a jump-start!) At minimum, though, knowing your Monday goal on Friday helps you get started on achieving it first thing Monday morning.
- At the end of every day, take 30 seconds to look at the next day’s tasks. Your mind will mentally prepare overnight, so you can hit the ground running in the morning.
OK, let’s get down to it. Go forth and achieve!
If you haven’t already, write down your goal, and break it into daily tasks for Monday through Friday. Look ahead to 5 p.m. Friday — What do you need to have accomplished? Tell your accountability friend what your goal is and what you’re going to do today.
Monday is my “other people tasks” day. These are jobs that require other people’s responses or input. And that means you may spend a lot of time waiting for them, or doing an email back-and-forth, before you can get these tasks done. So it’s best to give yourself the maximum amount of time.
Did you complete Monday’s tasks? If not, focus on those first. Then it’s on to Tuesday’s tasks, aka “the dreaded tasks.”
If you’re like me, your motivation and energy lag as the week wears on. So Tuesday is a great day to complete the tasks that are weighing you down, the things you’re dreading. Why spend all week dreading doing something when you can just get on with it?
Make the phone call. Pay the bill. Talk to your boss. Just get ‘er done.
Hump-day check-in on your weekly plan. You should be at least halfway to your weekly goal by the day’s end. Ask yourself — Am I on target? Is my goal realistic? Do I need to adjust, and is that possible? Do I need to push myself harder, and if so, how do I make that happen?
Update your Wednesday task list as needed. And send an update to your accountability buddy.
If you’re feeling panicked because you realized Wednesday that you’re a long way from your goal, no worries! That’s when early-start Thursdays comes to your rescue.
Ideally, Thursday is actually goal wrap-up day, so that you can save Friday for last-minute details or surprises and prep work for next week.
Often on Thursdays, I feel like I’m falling behind on something. That’s why I like to get an early start on this particular day. If it’s 8 a.m., and I’ve already done an hour’s worth of work or more, then I really have a full two days to finish accomplishing my goal. That’s quite a lot of time.
If, however, I cave to low motivation and energy, it’ll be 11 a.m. and I’ll just be getting started.
Push yourself today! The reward comes tomorrow!
Final tasks to complete your weekly plan. Today you achieve your goal! Identify next week’s goal and start thinking about how you can break it up into smaller tasks. Is there anything you have to do today to make accomplishing next week’s goal easier?
Celebrate! Rest up! Hang out with your kids. Go out on a date. Take some time to pat yourself on the back for a week well-done. You did it! Look at you shine!
Try this weekly plan out and see how it works for you. How does this compare to how you organize your week? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!