Notion Goal Tracking & Planning

Notion Goal Tracking & Planning

how i plan, track, and stay on top of my goals

As we start to settle into the new year and plan out all that we are working towards in 2023, some real “where do i start?” moments tend to arise. So I thought now would be a nice time to share how I plan out the systems I use to reach my goals. Reflection and taking a step back is also scheduled into my planning time, so that I can evaluate what is really required of me to stay on top of my goals.

start with the end in mind

I am never one to be short on ideas, what they lacks sometimes, is direction. Coming up with tactic after tactic to get me to my end goal has never been difficult, the problem is that it can sometimes trail off into a different tangent. In order to really set myself up for success I have found that starting from the goal and working backwards is best.

Easy example: lemonade. Let’s say my goal is to make lemonade. The first approach to get there is to pop into the grocery store and grab my food and supplies. The issue with this approach is there are many many aisles to walk down, each full of things I may want or need, but not necessarily for the lemonade. I could grab some strawberries or blackberries because flavored lemonade is even better. I could also get distracted by all the wonderful salty snacks I’d enjoy with the refreshing drink I have yet to make.

At this point, I have also gone to the store without checking my own pantry to see what I already have on hand. I haven’t considered the amount of lemonade I need to make. Do I want a whole pitcher full of lemonade or just one glass for myself? I’d need to know that to get the ratios of water to sugar to lemon juice accurate anyway! You get where I’m going with this.

If this sounds like you, maybe these tips will help steer you in the right direction.

goal planning hub in notion screenshotgoal planning hub in notion screenshot

year over year

First, you want to write out your long term goals. I always try to start with 5 or 10 years from now. I am not very good at stretching out that far though, so if 3 years away is as far as you can see, do that. (Just a note, I keep it super general here. My long term goals always change as I grow, so I don’t write this out for planning purposes, so much as for getting a good vision on where I am headed. Feelings over logic.)

Three years from now:

  • Where will you live? Who will be there with you?
  • How will you pay for essentials? What will your days look like?
  • Who do you want to be?

From this long term goals list, you will work backwards to your shorter term goals. You can keep this portion pretty broad because the breakdown will gradually get more and more specific. You just want to get those ideas out and written down someplace. I do this in Notion because that format allows me to see it anytime and I can make changes without feeling like I’ve messed up a page.

From my far out goal, I select the doable items that must be completed in order to reach the goal. These become my yearly goals. The yearly goal for 2023 would then be broken down further by quarters.

goal planning in notion smaller goal screenshot

quarter by quarter

Working and breaking up the year into quarters just works for my mind. I can get a good grasp on what is to come over the next three months so I can plot out realistic plans. It’s a good healthy look into the future for me. If you think your calendar would better serve you by just breaking the year in half, go for it.

Quarter one is always the big bounce back. Everyone is feeling productive, everyone is motivating one another. It’s beautiful. Because I know this for myself, I usually use Q1 to prep for Q2 and the gradual slowing that will follow.

I break my quarter goals into the next three months and only assign one (maybe two) goals to each month. This is all my mind can handle right now. Until I get more bandwith, I am working in nice bite-sized chunks.

In Notion, this looked and functioned best as a database. It allowed me to connect my Task List to it, which has been great for setting reminders and listing sub-tasks to reach my goal.

Related Post: How I Goal Plan (Digitally & Analog)

Related Post: Content Creation in Notion

An added step in setup that could be a game changer: adding each month to the database. This would leave you with a sort of landing page for every month to write out reflections and upcoming pans, any brainstorming, or specific notes for the month.

checking in every month

I’ve got my Goals Database linked up (via Relations) to my Task List, Product Pipeline, and Content Calendar to help me stay accountable. Having these databases connected forces me to evaluate each item I add to my calendar to identify what truly needs to get done vices what I am just excited about.

At first I thought this tactic would remind me to goal plan every month and check in regularly. Now that I have actually begun using the databases in this way, though, I see my goals just as often as everything else. My goal planner gets updated automatically as things change and develop, it’s awesome.

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hi, i'm v.

ISTJ, Taurus, Type 5

I'm a sticker maker, shop owner, Marine wife and mom. I design and create everything behind LBH in my home studio in Kailua. You can read more about my story here to get to know me better, and read about how the shop came about. 🍋