Achieve Your 2024 Goals by Setting Mini-Goals

Achieve Your 2024 Goals by Setting Mini-Goals

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Maybe you want to run a marathon. Or maybe you want to become fluent in Spanish. What about starting that small business you’ve always dreamed of?

These are all fantastic, life-changing 2024 goals, no doubt — but there’s just one problem: How do you know what the first step towards achieving them is? What are you supposed to do today, like *right now* to get started towards accomplishing these intimidating, massive undertakings? More often times than not, these type of goals remain daydreams, and unfortunately are put back on the shelf for “another day.” 

But there is one easy trick to build a snowball of momentum and overcome this procrastination: Break down your seemingly insurmountable tasks into bite-sized pieces! Here’s a few ideas of how you could frame it: What’s the one thing you can do in the next hour to make progress towards launching that business? Do you have five minutes this morning to practice Duolingo? What about going for a long walk this afternoon before dinner? Easy-peasy!

Mini-Goals are the Secret Sauce to Success 🥇

It’s cheesy, but it’s true — momentum builds, but you often have to start small. Think about it: How daunting does “I want to write a book” sound? You know, just a casual 100,000 words. But if you divide that by 365, it’s only 275 words a day, or about two paragraphs. Could you instead reframe your goal as “I want to write two paragraphs of my book each morning”? That suddenly seems a heck of a lot more manageable. Before you know it, you’ll be in the flow of a morning routine, crossing these mini-goals off your to-do list before you’ve even finished your first cup of coffee.

habit tracker

Keep Track of Your Progress 📊

There are bound to be days where you are lacking motivation, exhausted, discouraged or just straight-up disinterested in working towards your any of your 2024 goals. First of all, you should acknowledge that this is completely normal, and maybe it's even a sign that you should take a rest day until you are back on track. But once you feel like you're ready to push through, one easy tip to drum up motivation is to look back on where you were one week, one month or even one year ago.

Keeping a daily record of your plans and goals can be extremely helpful towards tracking your habits and staying consistent. You might not notice significant progress from one day to the next, but if you re-read a journal entry from five months ago, you’ll immediately realize how far you’ve already come.

This is why it’s super helpful to write your goals down ahead of time. In fact, have you ever completed a task, realized it wasn’t written down on your to-do list, so you added it just so you could immediately cross it off? Guilty as charged! It might seem funny, but there’s a reason that we all do this — the sense of accomplishment that comes with completing a task is a positive force that keeps us going onto the next one — momentum, baby!

Celebrate Your Wins in Public 🥳

Hold yourself accountable! By sharing your mini-goals with friends and family, you are much more likely to follow-through with them. Share your small wins with coworkers, post on social media when you’ve reached a new milestone, throw a party when you’ve reached a major breakthrough — whatever you need to do to get the word out about your goals can make all the difference.

Even if you haven’t begun to quite see the fruits of your labor yet, be sure to still celebrate consistency. Small ounces of progress will compound eventually, as long as you keep showing up. Did you wake up at 6am to work out every day this week? That’s incredible, kudos to you! It’s something worth celebrating (maybe treat yourself to an extra-large iced latte today?) even though one week of exercise likely won’t have resulted in achieving your long-term fitness goals quite yet. But by celebrating and rewarding your accomplishment, you are that much more likely to show up and do it again next week.

setting realistic goals

Bite Sized Goals = More Realistic Goals 🍬

It’s no surprise that so many New Year’s Resolutions fail quickly — that “New Year, New Me” super ambitious mindset is great, but if you’re like most people, by mid-January, you’ve probably already lost steam and realized that learning a new language in single month was maybe just a bit too aggressive. Similarly, going cold turkey on quitting a bad habit or attempting things like the increasingly popular “dry January” can feel a bit extreme if it’s a brand new goal. Instead, use shorter time-frames as a test run, and if you succeed, incrementally increase the timeframe and intensity of your goals.

Setting shorter-term goals also allows you to be more realistic — because life is always going to get in the way. Things like weekend plan interruptions, personal emergencies or plain old cheat days happen (we’re all human after all). But by setting a goal for just the next five days, you can rest or take a small break afterwards as you need without feeling getting completely derailed and discouraged. This is why mini-goals work so well — they are easily repeatable and much less intimidating than attempting to make sudden, significant, permanent shifts in our behavior.

Continuously Track, Revisit and Adjust Your 2024 Goals 🏁

Mini-goal setting is really just creating good habits in disguise. So after a few weeks, it’s important to stop and review your mini-goals. You may find that you’ve been easily crushing some first thing each morning, but there are others that you’ve made zero progress on. By constantly recalibrating and tweaking each goal to fit your needs and schedule, you can maximize what’s working and which goals you might need to break up into even smaller bits.

Better yet, by getting visual and physically writing things down (old-school pen to paper style!) you’ll be more easily able to recognize patterns, drop-offs, and momentum shifts in your day-to-day behavior. If you’re looking for the perfect way to track your goals, check out some of Tidy Plan’s printable weekly planners and cute stationery here — they are perfect for monitoring and comparing your progress over the course of a few weeks or months.

Setting mini-goals is the perfect way to achieve what once seemed like an impossible task. So, why not start today and experience the life-changing benefits of setting mini-goals for yourself? It could be breakthrough you need to finally achieve those epic (yet totally achievable!) 2024 goals that you've always daydreamed about.


Thanks for checking out The Deep Clean, Tidy Plan's blog full of tips and advice to help you declutter your mind and build good habits. We're all about self-care, productivity, organization, and are here to assist you on your personal growth journey to become your best self!