2013 Goals

Halfway through the opening month of the new year and I have just finished writing my goals for the year; this year it was much easier than last year.  Why?  For one, I realized I had set, not too large of goals but too many of them.  Last year, I had five to seven goals in each of five areas of my life.  There was a lot of them, too many actually for me to focus on and stay driven to accomplish them all.

Don’t think that I completely wasted my time last year, I did not.  I succeeded at several of my 2012 goals but not as many as I would have liked.  I increased my business income some but only 5 – 10%, my goal was to increase it by 20% so I have some work to do.  I maintained my weight loss for the most part but have in the last three months, put a bunch of that weight back on.  My wife and I have also succeeded in paying off some more student loan debt.  We still have a lot to go but we are gradually making progress.  These were success.

This year though, I decided to keep it more simple.  This really stuck out when I listened to Michael Hyatt’s episode entitled “How to Develop More Discipline” on his This is Your Life podcast.  I love podcasts and listen all the time.  Michael Hyatt’s podcast is one that I look forward to every week.  In his episode, he discusses how we need to keep our goals to a short enough list that we can keep them in our focus all year-long.

This year then, I have only seven goals total.  A few of them I am going to keep private but I will list and go through several of the steps outlined in the podcast episode.

1.  Complete my Fourth Degree Black Belt exam by February 28, 2013.

I have been training for several months for this exam but have had two setbacks and I am finally getting healthy.  This is a major step in the continuing evolution of my martial arts training and the development of my school.  With a fourth degree rank, I can schedule and test my own students.  This will free up some scheduling problems that have arisen over the years.  It will make it easier for my students to progress in rank and yet at the same time I will be able to challenge them more because I am with them training every week.  This will be better for my students all around.

Obstacles to achieving this goal are few; primarily, it is injury.  I have severely sprained my ankle and dislocated my finger in the last three months.  Both of these injuries have hampered my training some.  Another obstacle is the lack of black belts in my school who have the expertise to be my training partners.  We have a small school with few adults and only two adults who are black belts.  These two individuals are two amazing people, who I am very fortunate to have in the school with me.  I would not be able to do as much as I do now without their assistance.  They are new black belts though and have been training for some time with me privately but it is a lot of material for them to be ready to do at my speed.

Some new behaviors I have to adopt would be to not attempt stupid things, like sledding headfirst down a hill chasing my son (dislocated finger).  In addition, I need to set up regular training times with my black belts to get the work in that we all need for this exam.

2.  Lose 20 pounds by May 31, 2013.  I know that last week I said I am not going to focus on being merely “not fat,” that is still true.  I want to be healthy and this twenty pounds will get me back to where I felt great.  I was not ripped and skinny but I was healthy and had few aches and pains.  I am starting to feel some of those old aches return and I do not like it.  My back hurts more as to my knees and shoulders.

There is only one obstacle to this goal; lethargy.  I must get over myself and get off my chair and work.  My wife and I have cut almost all wheat out of our diet and I am already feeling a difference.  Now, the only other effort is to get back into the gym and workout.  Adding strength training to my routine will help me shed pounds faster than solely cardio work.  I have a slow metabolism and as such I have to work much harder than others.  This will be good for me.

3.  Enrolled 80 active students in my traditional Taekwondo school by December 31, 2013.  For some schools that does not seem like a big numbers but for us, this number is much larger than we can currently handle.  Why this number?  Because it will get me one step closer to being a full-time martial arts instructor.  I am a teacher, I have been my entire life; every fiber of my being wants to help people learn and grow into better people.

The major obstacle to achieving this goal is the lack of enough scheduled class time.  We currently do not have enough space or instructors available to teach this many students.  We are going to have to adapt our schedule a little bit and change the way we think about teaching the students in order to keep them in the school and keep the school growing.  I know we can do it but it is going to be a hard process.

The biggest behavior that we are going to have to change at our school is to give the students what they want and not necessarily what the instructors want.  I have struggled with this for a long time, if fact it is my biggest business struggle.  It is my job to give the students the best experience and the best training that I possibly can.  That means doing more of what the students want.

Well, those are some of my goals or 2013.  I know they are big, they are for me, at least.  But they will be a challenge to attain but I do not think they are beyond my ability.  I will keep them in the front of my mind and hopefully be able to adapt and expand them as I see the need.  Maybe they will not be as big as I thought are.  What do you think?

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