2021 Goals

Last year was my first time using the PowerSheets Goal Planner, and the system really worked for me. I recently shared a look inside my goal planner and my progress on my 2020 goals, and I'm excited today to share my 2021 goals. Some of today's will look familiar and some are new areas of focus for a new year and new season of life.

I spent time in December completing the prep work, making my vision board, and finalizing my goals. The one place I got hung up for a while? My word of the year! I thought I had an idea of what I wanted, but it just never felt right. I skipped that page, continued to work on my goals, and finally had a moment of inspiration this week.

Because it came to me at the end of the process, I'm going to introduce my goals first and then my word of the year. One thing you'll notice about my goals is that they aren't SMART goals. I prefer to have larger "goal themes" – areas of my life that I want to focus on – for the whole year and then set more specific monthly and quarterly goals within each category. The things that matter most to me are typically areas where I can make changes but will never truly be "done," so this format works best for me. First, here's my 2021 vision board:

Sources:  Bible, Journal, Quote, Shoes, Date, Albums // Trees, Boys, & Cookies from Canva

Last year was my first time making a vision board, and I honestly thought it sounded dumb. But synthesizing my goals into images was fun and meaningful, too! Just seeing the collage throughout the year was such a lovely reminder of my purpose. So, I was excited to find new images to visually represent what I want from 2021. 

With this in front of me as inspiration, I wrote my big-picture goals:

1. Deepen my relationship with the Lord.
Last year, my goal was to revitalize my faith. It had been a long time since I'd prioritized that area of my life, and my focus was developing a habit of reading my Bible every day. Now that it's become a daily habit, I want to focus on deepening my relationship. I want less checklist and more conversation with the God I love. This is the goal that matters most to me because it has to power to affect everything else in my life, too. 

Mini goals: Daily devotional, Soulspace meditation, Bible study, memorize Scripture, and read Christian non-fiction.

2. Create habits for a healthier life.
One of the things in my life that I've long neglected is making healthy choices for my body when it comes to food, sleep, and physical activity. I've had very little desire to change and specifically didn't focus on it in 2020 because I knew it wasn't the right timing with a baby on the way at the beginning of the year. But it's been on my mind a lot lately, and I know it's time. I will be going slow on this one, but I have a little-by-little plan in mind.

Mini goals: Drink more water, less Diet Coke, earlier bedtime, movement goals, family walks, and screen-free time.

3. Cherish the people I love.
After my faith, this is my next most important goal. My main focus will be on my relationship with Nick and our two boys, but I wanted broad enough wording to include my family and friends. 2020 made it clear how much I need my people! My home is my most meaningful sphere of influence, and who I am as a wife, mother, daughter, and friend matters to me. I want to continue to work towards being present and intentional with my loved ones. 

Mini goals: 2021 family bucket list, date nights with Nick and one-on-one time with my big boy, plan a family trip, read marriage and/or parenting books, have local adventures, celebrate traditions, and limit screen time. 

4. Preserve our family photos and memories.
This is essentially the same goal as 2020, but I'll have a different focus in 2021. Last year, I was primarily working on organizing our digital photos from the past 5+ and developing habits to stay on top of it. Additionally, I worked on filling out my boys' childhood history journals. For 2021, my focus will be on designing and printing family yearbooks. I've got a few mini goals, too, but printed books is the priority. I want to enjoy our photos!

Mini goals: Create family yearbooks, maintain photo organization, print annual photo calendar, continue to fill out boys' journals, complete Miss Freddy's backup bootcamp and family yearbook courses.

5. Improve meal planning and experiment in the kitchen.
One thing that came up repeatedly in my prep work last year was my desire for new routines. It was an area where I saw so much change in 2020 – and was able to witness firsthand the power of that little-by-little progress! While I have gotten more into the meal planning and grocery shopping groove, I'd love to improve my process... and even start to experiment more with cooking. My desire is to feel more confident and find joy in the kitchen.

Mini goals: Make list of go-to meals and seasonal meal queues, research healthier breakfast/lunch/snack options, take a cooking class, organize Plan to Eat, kitchen staples list, read a cookbook, and implement tips for picky eaters.

6. Invest time in what brings me joy. 
And finally, I had to have books and blogging on my list! Reading is my favorite way to decompress, and blogging is my favorite creative outlet. I was really proud of myself for making time for both during those newborn days, and I want to continue that momentum into 2021. There are a few other things that interest me – like journaling and figuring out how to use my fancy camera – that may become mini goals later in the year, too.  

Mini goals: Set Goodreads goal, participate in reading challenges, create seasonal TBRs, blog 2x per week, research email newsletter options, catch up on NetGalley reviews, and start journaling. 

7. Complete the Contentment Challenge.
Rather than a broad finance goal, like last year, I wanted to be super specific and start with The Contentment Challenge, hosted by Nancy Ray. It's is a three-month commitment to give up shopping for unnecessary stuff. I'll just do the self-led version – a meaningful thing I did last year that taught me so much. Before I broaden the goal, I need to dig more deeply into the why behind what I want to do so that I'll be more invested in the what.

Mini goals: Unsubscribe from marketing emails, create "buy it later" list, and decide on any exceptions.

As you can see, four of these goals are very similar to ones I had for 2021. I will have new mini goals and action steps associated with each of them, and I'm excited to see how that progress continues to add up in a new year. The two new goals – meal planning and health – are ones that I'm looking forward to working on. 

There's one goal from last year that I'm not focusing on at this time – routines. The reason? I've finally established them! My plan is to continue to maintain the rhythms that I started last year, like my end-of-the-month prep and review session. But I didn't feel the need to make it a goal because it feels like second nature now that the habit has been formed! If that changes with time, I can always refresh my goals later on.

- - - -

For 2020, my word the year was nurture. I loved that word from the moment I thought of it, and it was very fitting for that year of my life. I initially struggled with my word for 2021 and found myself considering words that felt very similar to nurture – tend, treasure, cherish, devote. But none felt right, so I kept waiting.

My boys and I were listening to an album of children's worship music one day when I was struck by a particular song. It's called "Light of Your Love" by Ellie Holcomb, and the chorus repeats the phrase, "I'm gonna rest in the light of Your love." Every time, I'd find myself singing along with a huge smile on my face. Maybe rest was supposed to be my word of the year? Nope. Then, I looked up "light" and something clicked:
The first definition on Merriam-Webster is "something that makes vision possible." I immediately loved that since a huge aspect of goal setting is having a vision for what you want to accomplish and who you want to be. I loved that the word could be mean so many things, including "something that enlightens or informs," "a particular expression of the eye," "to ignite something," "not heavy," "easily endurable," and "free from care."

I could think of ways the word applied my goals. Why do I want to preserve our family memories? To see my boys' faces light up as they look at photo albums! Reading and blogging are things that light a fire within me. I want to start seeing meal planning and cooking in a different light. I want to be a light within my family – a bright spot, a source of warmth, and free from care. You get the idea! Then, I looked up the word in the Bible:

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? - Psalm 27:1 

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. - Psalm 119:105 

You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. - Matthew 5:14-16

For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. - Matthew 11:30

... for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. - Ephesians 5:8-10 

And I knew I'd found my word! Although our family made so many happy memories in 2020, it was certainly a heavy year. I started thinking about how I hope 2021 is the opposite – that I hope it's light, joyful, and bright. 

Have you made any goals for 2021?
Or chosen a word of the year?


  1. I would love to see more on your family yearbook! That is such an interesting concept, and one I haven't heard of before. My word of 2021 is Thrive :)

    1. I will definitely share updates about my family yearbook process. The idea I have in mind is like a cross between a photo album and a scrapbook -- a printed book of our photos but adding context with a little bit of writing, too. We'll see what happens as I start working on it!

      I love your word of the year! That's a great choice any time, but particularly timely for 2021. No matter the circumstances of this year, I hope you thrive in them :)

  2. Love, love, love these goals, Hannah! And your vision board is BEAUTIFUL!

  3. What a beautiful choice for your word for 2021, Hannah! I absolutely love it <3 And I can't wait to see you tackle all these goals this year.


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