June 12, 2021  

Tired Of Failing At Your Goals? Why Goal Check-Ins Are Vital To Success (Plus Free Goal Setting Worksheet)


Published: 7/2/19 | Updated: 6/12/21

Not assessing and refreshing your goals each month is a big mistake. Download this free goal-setting worksheet and learn how to do quick goal check-ins. (Your success depends on them!)

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Can you believe this year is halfway over already?! Today we’re revisiting the goals we set way back in January (remember those?).

Don’t worry if you haven’t followed through on your goals this year, that’s exactly why we’re here today! And if you never got around to setting goals for this year, that’s okay, too! There’s nothing magical about January 1 and it’s never too late to create goals for yourself.A big reason people fail at their goals is that they aren’t intentional about checking in on their progress. If you don’t revisit and revise them periodically, it’s no wonder you fail to reach them. That’s like planning the perfect route for your family road trip and then never once looking at the route during your trip. You’re bound to take a few wrong turns!

It’s so easy to lose momentum and completely forget about your goals. And it’s tough to make progress when you don’t even remember what you’re working toward.

Looking for more goal-setting articles? Check out these past blog posts:

  1. My 10 Step Formula For Goal Setting Success (Plus Free Goal Setting Worksheet)
  2. When To Pivot Your Goals (& When To Keep Going)
  3. Why You Should Have 90-Day Goals (And A Goal Setting Worksheet)
  4. Powersheets 101: How To Cultivate Intentional Goals This Year
  5. Creating A 10-Minute Morning Journaling Routine For Self Reflection And Goal Setting
goal-setting-worksheet-on-desk

Checking in on your goals is always a good idea, no matter the time of year. Everyone knows they’re supposed to set goals on January 1, but that energy quickly fizzles out. And I totally get it! It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day grind and lose sight of the big goals you wanted to tackle this year.

Today I’m bringing you actionable tips you can use to do a goal check-in and assess how you’re doing so far. Even if you haven’t done much of anything, the beauty is that you can use your goal check-in to revise your goals and start fresh today.

I even have an awesome free goal setting worksheet for you today, so let’s dive in!

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This post contains affiliate links. See my disclosure policy for details.

How To Do A Goal Check-In (And Why You Should)

A goal check-in is an opportunity to remind yourself of your goals, refresh and revise them, assess your progress, and identify action steps. It’s a critical part of the goal-setting process!

why is a regular check-in important for goal setting?

It’s a time for evaluating your progress. A check-in gives you time to assess how far you’ve come and determine what needs to happen to stay on track.

It’s a time to weed out the unnecessary. It’s pretty easy to set overly-ambitious goals in January. As you get further into the year, it’s a good idea to reevaluate. Reassess your goals and let go of those that are a lower priority. It’s also okay to adjust your goals or scale them back based on how the first part of the year has gone.

It’s a time to course correct. It’s much better to assess your goals now then it is to wait until December! Even if you’ve made little progress so far, remember that you still have time left in the year to get back on track!

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How often should you do a goal check-in?

There’s no magical interval for goal check-ins. I personally like to do a quick check-in at the beginning of every month so I can evaluate how things are going. This is the time when I make adjustments and create an action plan for the month ahead.

No matter the frequency of your check-ins, I suggest committing to a consistent schedule and adding a recurring reminder to your calendar. Without these check-ins, it’s far too easy to lose sight of your goals.

Free Goal Setting worksheet

I created this free printable worksheet to help guide your goal check-ins. The free printable has a few reflection questions that help you reflect on your progress, revise your goals if needed, and create action steps for the coming months.

I recommend printing a copy of the worksheet for each goal and filling them out during your regular goal check-ins.

You can snag this goal-setting printable worksheet by clicking the blue button below. Just pop in your email address and I’ll send the PDF to your inbox right away.

HOW TO DO A GOAL CHECK-IN

1. Reflect on what’s going well. What were your big wins? What’s working? How are you doing?

2. Reflect on what’s not going so well. Are you unhappy with your progress? Have you not been putting in the time you wanted? Have you had setbacks? Is fear holding you back? Are you making excuses?

3. Refresh and revise your goal. Goals are not set in stone so take the liberty to edit them whenever you like. You’re in control!

If your goal doesn’t feel quite right, rewrite it with fresh words. And if you aren’t excited about it anymore, it’s okay to let it go. If you aren’t pumped up about it, you won’t complete it anyway so it’s better to focus your energy on rocking your other goals.

4. Connect your goal back to your why. Dig deep and consider why this goal is important and meaningful to you. If it doesn’t resonate with you at a deep level, you won’t be motivated to work on it.

I have a big health goal for the year and while it’s tied to my weight, my deeper why is that I want to model a healthy lifestyle for my daughter and live a long life so I can see her grow up. When I’m struggling to complete the action items for this goal, I remind myself of my why and that keeps me pushing forward.

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5. Identify action steps. Consider the next few action steps you’ll need to take to inch closer to your end goal. If you’re unsure, work your way backward from the goal and write down the milestones you’ll need to achieve on your way to the finish line. Now take a look at the first milestone and brainstorm actions you can take to reach it.

6. Designate time to work on your goal. This is a big reason so many goals fail. If you don’t put time on your calendar, it won’t happen!

Get specific. Instead of saying you will workout twice per week, go ahead and commit to two specific workout times and put them on your calendar.

I fell into this trap this year. I am determined to get healthier and a big component of that is fitness. But no matter how many times I would tell myself I was going to exercise three days per week, it never happened.

Realizing I needed specific times on my calendar, I joined a boot camp gym that has specific camp times. Now I have 6 a.m. workouts on my calendar three mornings per week and I never miss them. Making the shift from saying I’ll “work out three times this week” to specifically saying I “work out every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 6:00” made all of the difference.

Create contingency plans. It’s not a question if, it’s a question when you’ll get thrown off track. And that’s when contingency plans come into play. Have a plan to get right back at it without beating yourself up.

Here’s an example: “if I go out to eat with co-workers instead of eating the healthy lunch I packed, I will eat my healthy lunch for dinner that night.”

If you predict the common things that sidetrack your goals before they happen, you can create a contingency plan so they don’t push you too far off course.

Schedule your next goal check-in. Choose a date and time for your next goal check-in and add a reminder to your calendar! And when I say put it on your calendar, I really mean physically put it on your calendar.

How To Do A Mid-Year Goal Check In

Active Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes

Materials

  • Goal Check-In Worksheet (Free download: smallstuffcounts.com/goal-setting-check-in)
  • Pen

Instructions

  1. Reflect on what's going well.
  2. Reflect on what's not going so well.
  3. Refresh and revise your goal.
  4. Connect your goal back to a why.
  5. Identify action steps.
  6. Designate time to work on your goal.
  7. Create contingency plans.
  8. Schedule your next goal check in.

Notes

Great job! Repeat this process for each goal.

*More details about doing a goal check-in can be found in the original blog post: smallstuffcounts.com/goal-setting-check-in

Recommended Products

This post contains affiliate links. See my disclosure policy for details.

Incorporating Powersheets Into Your Goal Check-Ins

The single most helpful tool that helps me accomplish my goals is the Powersheets Goal Planner. You definitely don’t need Powersheets to set goals or do a goal check-in, but I LOVE the format of the workbook and cannot imagine chasing my goals without it (plus, the workbook is super pretty!).

I do goal check-ins at the end of every month using the goal check-in worksheet I’m sharing today alongside my Powersheets workbook. Powersheets include a ton of exercises that help you create your goals along with monthly sections that have space to reflect on the past month, evaluate your progress, and create your action plan for the month ahead.

To use my goal setting worksheet in conjunction with Powersheets, here’s how I suggest you use them in tandem:

  1. Complete the first pages of your monthly Powersheets prep work where you’ll reflect on the past month and start thinking about the month ahead. Don’t fill in your tending list quite yet.
  2. Complete the Goal Check-In Worksheet I’m sharing in this post (you can shrink it’s size a bit when you print and then tape it in the blank “Wildcard” page of your Powersheets workbook.)
  3. Fill in your monthly “Tending List” inside Powersheets, making sure to incorporate some of the action steps from your Goal Check-In worksheets.

Related: Powersheets 101: How To Cultivate Intentional Goals This Year

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Doing a goal check-in is a way to reflect and reevaluate so you can stay on track with your goals. Taking a few minutes to intentionally step back and assess your goals will help you maintain that goal-chasing momentum all year long.

Looking for more goal-setting articles? Check out these past blog posts:

  1. My 10 Step Formula For Goal Setting Success (Plus Free Goal Setting Worksheet)
  2. When To Pivot Your Goals (& When To Keep Going)
  3. Why You Should Have 90-Day Goals (And A Goal Setting Worksheet)
  4. Powersheets 101: How To Cultivate Intentional Goals This Year
  5. Creating A 10-Minute Morning Journaling Routine For Self Reflection And Goal Setting

Have a fantastic day!

FREE GOAL CHECK-IN WORKSHEET

Use this goal check-in worksheet as a guide for evaluating your goals and refining them monthly. Subscribe to have the free worksheet sent straight to your inbox.

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  1. Hi Emily,
    Really enjoy reading your blog always a pleasure hearing from you as well. Thanks for the free Goal Check-in worksheet and all the other free stuff that you put up. Take care and have a wonderful week. Hugs!

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