Goal setting is an archaic concept by now when it comes to New Year’s resolutions and intentions. Everyone has high hopes for healthier habits and better days when January 1 rolls around. But oftentimes we set goals as individuals, and neglect the idea of setting goals with our partner. Our relationships with our spouse or significant other are equally as important as the relationship with ourselves, so why don’t we apply the same goal-setting principles to that relationship? Especially given the turmoil that was 2020 where many of us spent more time at home with our partners than ever before, 2021 is a great time to consider setting goals and intentions with our loved ones.
Get aligned on your values
Hopefully you and your partner are already aligned when it comes to your core values, but it doesn’t hurt to sit down and talk them through. Start by each of you writing down your top five values for the new year and where you want to focus on, then compare notes. If you have common themes, great. If you have a few stragglers on your individual lists, chat through how you can prioritize and combine those into common values so you can both have your needs fulfilled.
Prioritize your categories
Now that you have your list, prioritize them together. You might be surprised what is at the top of your partner’s list vs. what is headlining yours. If you’re feeling stuck, trying asking each other these questions:
- Why are we doing what we’re doing?
- How are we making a positive difference in the lives of others?
- Who will benefit, now and in the future?
- What do we want to get out of this?
Once you have everything prioritized, you’ll have a clearer vision of what the year will look like together.
Take a look at your calendar year before you get too deep into planning. If you have financial goals, see where those land on the list of priorities and how you can achieve them over the year. Take into consideration things like taxes, “big spend” months, etc.
This is where you’ll also want to define responsibilities as well. Be clear about each of your strengths and weaknesses. Then divide and conquer to maximize your strengths and minimize your weaknesses. This isn’t the time to get into an argument about who is doing “more” than the other. Strength in partnerships comes from trust in each other. And trust comes from knowing your partner will be patient with your limitations, shore up your weaknesses and encourage you to keep going and try again.
Keep an open dialogue
Good communication is key to not only achieving your goals with your partner, but for your relationship in general. Keeping an open dialogue will not only help you both achieve your joint goals, but you’ll also find yourself your greatest cheerleader. Make it a date night where you sit down once a week over a glass of wine to discuss your progress together. As you both offer support in a loving, non-judgmental way, you’ll find that reaching your goals becomes easier, and your relationship will become even stronger.
Main + featured image via our home tour with Miranda Anderson
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