I love lists. Like I really love lists. Making them, crossing things off, all of it. Seeing what I’ve accomplished is just so satisfying and truly a great motivator. And it’s that time of the year again to start thinking about a list of goals for myself as a reader and for the blog!
I don’t always write all my goals down, some just float around my head throughout the year. Most change, sometimes I add more, sometimes I take a few off. That’s the beauty of goals. I don’t HAVE to reach them and they’re as flexible as I’m willing to be because I’m not setting them for anyone but myself.
Before I decide on any goals, I look at the method we used in my college fraternity for goal-setting:
Setting SMARTER Goals
You may have seen this before in one form or another and, at first, I wasn’t a really big fan of using this system because it seemed to be really restricting BUT I found that I ended up doing it anyway when I created better goals for myself.
In case y’all need the disclaimer, this is my method. You’re welcome to apply it to your own life and goal making but it’s not the only method and certainly not the “right” one since there’s only a “right” way for you. So take from this post what you will and I hope that it’s useful for at least some of you!
Anyway, goal setting. You want a SPECIFIC goal. I feel like this is pretty self explanatory. “I want to read books” is pretty vague but “I want to read books by marginalized authors” is more specific and you could even go from there.
Your goal should be MEASURABLE. I mean, how else are you going to figure out if you achieved it? Now depending on the goal this might be as simple as “more than last year” or something like that, or it could be a number. For example: “I want to read 30 books by marginalized authors.”
Now here’s a part of goal-setting that I always mess up. Is your goal ATTAINABLE? I love dreaming big and set crazy goals for myself that I later change because I realize they weren’t going to happen. Consider your work load, your reading pace, your blogging habits, whatever is relevant to your goal and ask yourself if it’s a reasonable goal to set. Goals can always change so if you do hit it you can always add on!
This one ties in pretty well with the last one but make your goal REALISTIC. I’ve already covered this since with attainable goals since these two are closely related but consider your goal. Is it realistic for you right now, or when you hope to achieve it?
Probably the easiest of the list, give your goal a TIMELY deadline. By this I mean, give yourself milestones to reach or a final deadline to reach your goal. Most of the ones I have for the blog are year-long so my “deadline” is December 31, 2018 for my 2018 goals. You could set a monthly goal, weekly, whatever you want to do.
After you’ve created your goals, make sure to go back and EVALUATE them. Your life may change. Your reading habits may change. Your blog may change. There are so many factors that go into blogging or booktubing or bookstagramming, whatever you’re doing. It’s a good idea to revisit your goals and see if they’re still relevant.
Which leads right into REVISING your goals. If a goal is no longer suited to what you’re doing or what you want to achieve, change it! Goals are for YOU not anyone else. You don’t have to stay stuck with a goal that you can’t reach. Goals are for reaching and no matter what you’ve accomplished something, so don’t feel like you can’t change them.
Although this method of goal setting is written out like this, the actual process just. . . happens as you go and is far less work than this actually sounds like. Promise 😉
My Reading/Blogging Goals for 2018
I haven’t completed this list yet and will change it in the coming months as well as throughout next year but here are a few goals I’m working on solidifying for 2018!
- Read 15 SFF graphic novels.
- Read 10 YA or adult contemporary novels.
- Read 50 books by marginalized authors and/or about marginalized protagonists.
- Post on the blog at least twice a week, with one post being a review and the second being something different (discussion, promo post, etc).
- Maintain a 90% feedback ratio or higher on NetGalley.
- Read 50 backlist (pubbed before 2018) books from my bookshelves.
- Schedule blog posts at least 3 days in advance of their post date.
- Double social media following from numbers at end of 2017 to end of 2018.
I know my reading habits and speed pretty well by now, as well as how I tend to function on the blog and what I want to get better at in the future. Most of these are yearly goals with the exception of twice-weekly postings and scheduling, and as I’ll be student teaching through the first 4 months of 2018 and hopefully starting a full-time teaching job in the last 4 months, I’ll likely be changing many of these as the year goes on.
Haven’t decided yet but I may try to track these goals either on a weekly or monthly basis to see how consistent I am (plus it means more lists and check boxes so I’m there for that)!
I want to hear from YOU!
Do you set goals for your reading/blogging?
Have you started thinking about goals for next year?
What’s on your list?