How to set goals for a balanced life

Every once in a while it’s necessary to take stock and reflect on the year that’s passed and look forward and set goals for the year ahead. In setting these goals I want to branch out further than just looking at your work and career goals, because being well and feeling a sense of achievement outside of work can help you to perform better in your job. With that in mind here are the prompts that I use  to get you started.


What are your health goals for the next 12 months? Would you like to lose weight? If so, how much? Would you like to gain muscle? If so, find a picture of the dream physique and keep it next to your fridge.

Would you like to cut down on the amount of alcohol that you drink? Cut out caffeine? Or sugar? Or become vegan? Imagine what you will feel like when you achieve these goals. Think about this and then set goals for the coming months and year based on these ideas.


What have been your key career successes over the past 12 months? Maybe you got a new job? Maybe you have had some big wins in some key projects that you’ve been working on?

With those things in mind, what do you want to work on for 2020? Would you like to achieve a bigger sales target? Set up a side hustle? Change jobs? What would you like your working hours to be like in the new year? Be specific about the work that you would like to be doing and how you might get there.


How much money did you earn in last year? How did you spend it? Do you have any debts?

What are your financial goals for the new year? Maybe you’d like to save more, or invest some of your money? Or maybe you want 2020 to be the year that you get debt free? Use the 50:30:20 rule to divide the amount of money that you earn into living expenses, fun activities and savings. Is that the right amount for you or do you want to find a way to earn more?

What are the things that you want to save for? Maybe you’d like to buy a house or a better car or go on a dream trip? Set goals that inspire you for the coming months and years.


Think about your key relationships with your significant other and friends. Are you currently single and looking to settle down? Or are you wanting to find a way to be a better husband or wife? Do you see enough of your friends? Do you want to remember to send birthday and Christmas cards this year? Who are the key people in your life and how do you want to spend time with them this year. This might also include cutting some toxic people out of your life or reducing the amount of time that you spend with them if they are mentally draining for your and make it harder for you to achieve your goals.

Family life

How much time do you spend with your parents, siblings, cousins? Do you have children and want to spend more time with them? What would great look like in this area? Maybe a weekly games night? Or maybe you don’t live locally and would like to remember to call home once per week to check in?

Maybe you want to start a family, is it time to get on the same page as your other half?


This one is probably easier to think about if you’re religious, but if you’re not, think about how in touch you are with your core values and how you can be more purposeful in your life to align your actions with these core values. Maybe it’s to treat people how you would like to be treated, or to be more selfless. Maybe you need to identify what your values are.


What sort of person are you now? Think of the positives and the things that you’d like to change. Are you laid back? Are you super organised? Are you always on time? What are the things that you value and like about your personality as it is now?

What sort of person do you want to be this time next year? Do you want to be less stressed? More outgoing? Imagine what the future you could feel like and what behaviours you would exhibit? Write them down and use them to visualise throughout the year.

Hopefully this has given you some good ideas for how you can make this year the best year yet, set goals and improve in all aspects of your life. Remember, it’s unlikely that all of these will be going well at exactly the same time, but it’s useful to have goals in different categories because when one isn’t going according to plan, another one will be going well and this will help you to keep motivated.

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