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PODCAST: How to achieve your goals in 2021

Written on Mar 4, 2021

By Jessica Salerno, OSCPA senior content manager 
The arrival of the pandemic last year might have thrown any goals you set off track, but in 2021, choose to focus on the future and not overcompensate for 2020. 

Kristen Schmitt

“Don’t feel the pressure of making up for lost time,” said Kristen Schmitt, founder of consulting firm Thrive to Lead. “Instead consider ‘What did I learn last year,” not ‘How do I make up for what I didn't accomplish last year.” Because it's a journey.” 

Schmitt joined the latest episode of The State of Business podcast to discuss goal setting in 2021. She said every year it’s valuable to reflect on what you learned the previous year before setting goals for the current year. 

And now that coronavirus vaccines are becoming available, the question of when the world will return to “normal” should factor into goal setting, Schmitt said. 

“First consider what goals are going to be important or what you want to accomplish with the assumption that we're going to be in the status quo for a while,” she said. “And then looking at it if things go back to ‘normal,’ how do those change? You might come out of this with a ‘Plan A’ and a ‘Plan B,” or there might be a middle ground, because our new normal might not be the same as the old normal.” 

Many people go overboard when goal setting and fail to think through what’s realistic or significant to them. Schmitt suggested considering why the goal is meaningful to you beyond the achievement of it, and how it will improve your quality of life. She also mentioned that while it’s helpful to have support from others in achieving you goals, do not make success dependent on someone else, especially if that person might not be fully on board. 

Schmitt warned about being so hyper-focused on the achievement of the goal you lose sight of how it’s beneficial to you or your business. 

“If you set a goal of getting ‘X’ number of new clients this year, you might start taking on clients who are not the ideal client, or too demanding or really don't fit into your business model,” she said. 

Above all, Schmitt said to remember to be kind and flexible when working toward goals, especially with impact of 2020 still being felt. 

“Circumstances are constantly changing,” she said. “And we need to adjust our expectations and our goals for ourselves accordingly.” 

Listen to the episode available now and comment below to share one of your 2021 goals.