Setting Better Goals for 2019

Each year, I write out a set of goals for the coming year. I’m usually finished by mid-December.

This year, however, after reading a lot on how goal-setting can be counter-productive, I’m writing my 2019 goals a little differently (and it’s taken a little longer, too!).

Our Focus This Year

“Unfortunately, goals can focus attention so narrowly that people overlook other important features of a task,” say the authors of a Harvard Business School working paper on the unintended consequences of goal-setting.

For the past several years in New Hampshire, we were laser-focused on financial goals, perhaps to the detriment of other parts of our lives, like friendship.

Especially after we set our goal to become location independent and double our net worth, most of my yearly goals related to saving and investing more.

After all, we were just a few years out from starting our financial journey by paying off our debt, building up our net worth, paying off our debt again, and doubling our net worth.

The authors contend that goal-setting makes it difficult to deal with randomness and change, something we definitely noticed last year. After all, a mid-year move to North Carolina wasn’t on our yearly goal sheet! We realized that said move was way more important than words on a piece of paper and adjusted accordingly.

Continue reading “Setting Better Goals for 2019”