Stop Sabotage Tip#2: Benchmark Your Goals

WomanLookingAtCameraBenchmark Your Goals to Stop Self-Sabotage

Sarah Ban Breathnach, in her book Peace and Plenty, wrote,”Unless we have constant witnesses to our hard work, we are convinced we pull off every day of our lives through smoke and mirrors.” That’s why you benchmark. Benchmarking it is a way to measure your goals and evaluate your progress. It also reminds you that you are doing the work. And it keeps you on the victory track to success.
How? Say you have a big picture that includes having a summer home at the beach in five years. First you make a plan by starting at the end (five years) and work backwards. Like this:

  • Five years: I found the best house and closed on it this week. Next month I’m moving into my summer house at the beach
  • Four years: I’ve been meeting with the realtors and house-hunting; the realtors call me when they have something they think I should see. I’ve seen several houses that I like. Looking has helped me think about furniture and decor, so I’m looking around for how to furnish my new home
  • Three years: I’ve narrowed down the location to two shore towns. I’ve met with realtors in both towns and told them what I want them to help me find.
  • Two years: I talked to the mortgage broker and I know what I can afford. I figured out what I need to do to save the money I need and how I’ll pay for the mortgage. If I rent the house out from July 4-September 15, that will pay most of the mortgage and taxes. Then I can have it for myself the rest of the year. I can do this!
  • One year: I’ve thought about this all year and now I have a pretty good idea of what I want:
    • to be no more that 2-3 hours from home
    • be able to drive down on Friday and come home on Sunday night or Monday morning
    • have the family all come to the shore house for Thanksgiving dinner
    • celebrate New Year’s with fireworks on the beach
    • have friends come down for Memorial Day weekend

So, starting with the end in mind, you have the benchmarks. From those you can detail a to-do list. You may need to tweak each stage as you learn more.
When you check your benchmarks, if you haven’t done anything, get going! If you’re ahead of schedule, good for you!
Benchmarking means looking that plan over from time to time and evaluating what you’ve done and what you still have to do. Benchmarking enables you to avoid sabotage and stay in the empowerment zone.

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What are the Maine Diaries?

The Maine Diaries is a fun look at my annual adventure to New England where I unwind from normal life and reconnect with myself.

I was captivated by the Maine Coast on my first trip there in the late 90’s. In the years since, I’ve traveled up and down the coast from Kittery to Calais but I spend most of my Maine time Downeast. I love the adventures I have and the chance to unwind from the world and restore my inner clarity. I chronicle my experiences in The Maine Diaries.

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