Where I keep my New Year resolutions

We’re just past the two-week mark of 2016! How many 2016 goals have you crossed off last week? I crossed two: finishing Konmari tidying and getting my PADI Open Water Diver certification. That’s quite a good start.

Though I didn’t keep all my 2015 resolutions, I did find a good method to store them for easy reference and reminder.


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A gorgeous stock photo that are not my hands.

Last year, I started using Evernote to keep track of goals.  It has been really helpful since I have the app with me almost all the time.

I use a system shared by Michael Hyatt. I like that it lets me expand each goal to include the steps I need to take or have taken to achieve it. I could also store pictures or what-not in the Notes too.

How I use Evernote to keep track of my 2015 resolutions

The blogpost on Evernote gives you everything you need to know about the system. But here’s how I used it in real life.

Step 1: Have a Goal Summary Note to collect the different goals (Named 00. 2015 Goals)

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Some of my embarassing goals. I managed to do #7 but forgot to give it a tick.

I created a Notebook called 2015 GOALS. In this Notebook, the most important note is the Goal Summary Note or Content Pages note titled 00. 2015 Goals.

Then I list down the different things I want to achieve in the year. Most of them were just from the top of my head.

Step 2: Create separate notes for each goals

Mine is too embarassing to show you so here's the template from Evernote.
Mine is too embarassing to show you so here’s the template from Evernote.


For each goal, there is a Goal Detail Note to keep me motivated. I didn’t use it that way though. I used it more as a journal because I could clip images and write down important events that happened.

I really like this since it reminds me of how far I’ve completed the goal.

What didn’t work during my 2015 goal setting

Setting deadlines for each goal
My idea of deadline is very fluid so having deadlines for each goal didn’t really motivate me to finish them off. I think encouragement and guilt work as better motivators for me.

I gave up on goals I didn’t care much about
You can see that I didn’t tick off some of the goals. I realized that I didn’t really cared about them that much to begin with so I didn’t bother. Maybe having important goals is better than wishy-washy ones.

Vague goals
The dating goal was too vague. One date a month could mean anything. In the beginning, I used speed dating to try to cover it up. That didn’t work because I didn’t follow up. One-on-one dating wasn’t spectacular neither. Meh. Instead of vague goals, I should set KPIs to be on track.

What worked during my 2015 goal setting

Sharing your goal with others (start with an intimate bunch first) is helpful.

At the start of 2015, my colleagues and I shared our goals. It was a way to make ourselves accountable. We also encouraged each other along the way and point out when we deviate from our goals.

We shared our draft 2016 goals just last week. I’m going to polish my list before I send it to them again.


Wish you the best of luck in goal setting!


More about Liau Yun Qing

Yun Qing is a writer, improviser and curious person. She loves finding little adventures in life. In 2013, she went on a 130-day round-the-world trip. She wrote a book to help those who also want to go on a career break.

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