Setting good goals, the no bullshit way

How I set goals and create the life I want

So, the title of this post might be a bit harsh, however, this time of year you will be bombarded with a lot of “new me, new year” bullshit. You will see it on the TV, Facebook timelines, and frankly, it will be hard to escape. I am a lover of setting goals and self-improvement. It was this time last year when I sat down and really took a hard look at my life and where I wanted it to go. I didn’t want to be sitting around on new years eve reflecting on goals that I hadn’t achieved from the previous twelve months. I wanted to be sitting proudly celebrating what I achieved. So, I took action and in today’s post, I am going to share how I set goals for myself and how I achieve them. There is no set time for setting goals. Yes, January is great as it is a new year and a clean slate but if you only review your goals once a year then I am sorry but your chances of achieving them are slim. You need to be constantly reviewing your goals and your progress, not just on January 1st.

What sets you on fire?

Setting goals is not an easy foot. You first need to sit and write down all the things that you don’t like in your life and that makes you feel dissatisfied. These can be in your career, home, relationships and finances. Dig deep and write down all of the things that you would love to change. Make the list as long as you can. When you are happy with your list, put them in priority order. So, the things that really tick you off first followed by the things that you can live with but would like to improve.

I then start to look at the things I already have in my life and how I can improve on them. You can set goals for things that are going good in your life. For me, happiness means growth. If I am not growing and developing as a person then I start to feel a sense of dissatisfaction. Growth can be in different areas of your life, personally, emotionally, spiritually, financially and socially.

You must write it down

Get a journal, a fancy notebook, anything! But write it all down. Don’t leave the thoughts up in your head. I have a dog-eared notebook that is full of my goals and ideas. Writing it down makes it easier to review. There is something powerful about a pen to paper. You might feel silly writing down your goals. I would probably die if someone stole my notebook and read all my ideas and goals but don’t let that stop you from putting the pen to the paper. Another thing I highly recommend you do is to visualise! Visualise your goal and what it looks like, how it sounds, smells and feels. Break it down into your head and visualize what it looks like. Have you ever heard the phrase ” If you can see it in your mind, You can hold it in your hand? You are a magnet, Whatever you are you draw to”.

Ask yourself why?

So, your goal is to have a Range Rover, mansion and 2.4 kids! Why? Ask yourself why you want the things you are striving for. Are these things going to fulfil you in the end? At the end of the day when you die, all those superficial things you collected won’t mean shit! It is the memories you make and the people you touch that matter. Your legacy. Now, don’t get me wrong a Range Rover would be nice, but, dig deeper than superficial things. I have financial goals, my goal is to have an abundance of wealth so I don’t have to worry about bills. I always want to have enough to live the life I want. It’s not to be a millionaire. Once I have enough to pay for that thatch roof cottage and explore the world then that’s all I want! lol

Take action and stop making excuses

This is where people slip and why goals don’t get achieved. We live in an age where a lot of people are putting a front on social media and in life. Pretending their life is the shit when really they are sitting on their asses making excuses and not taking action and wondering why they feel unfulfilled. Listen and you will hear it on a daily basis. “I would love a house but there is none to buy, I would love a new job but I have no experience, I would love a new relationship but all the men are taken” etc etc. Go and take action. The moment I stopped making lame excuses is when I started to achieve. I bought a house by myself in a recession when there was also no houses to buy. I could have pulled out the same excuse as everyone else but instead, I made a plan and I took action. I got a savings advisor, I saved half my wage for a few years and I got it.

Generally, when I am making excuses it is coming from a place of fear. Next time you notice an excuse popping into your head, why not challenge it? Sit with it and see if it is a genuine reason or an excuse to make you feel better.

Break your goal down into actions. Your goal might be to lose 20 pounds. Write down how you are going to achieve it. Break it down into daily, weekly steps.  Half a pound a week and exercise 3 times a week and review my progress weekly. People mainly fail because they don’t review their goal and get so consumed with the end result that they forget to celebrate the little successes on the way to achieving the big goal. So, you didn’t lose 20 pounds but you lost 15. That is 15 more than if you gave up.
Maybe your goal is more spiritual or you want to find a relationship. The same principles apply. Write down all the steps you can take to achieving that goal. One of my goals for 2017 was to travel and explore more. So, I booked flights. No matter how scared I was the fear of not doing it was bigger than doing it. A simple step, I booked flights and I boarded planes. I could have made the excuse for not having people to travel with but instead, I went solo! See what I am getting at? Don’t let fear and excuses put you off, challenge them and take action. If the regret and fear of not taking actions are far greater than doing it then take the leap. As cliche as is sounds. you only have one life, what are you waiting for?




Like I said at the top of this post if you only review your goals once a year then your not gonna achieve them as best you would if you reviewed them more often. You don’t want that sinking feeling come December when you think of all the things you said you would achieve back in January. Some goals might only need to be reviewed monthly. Others might need to be reviewed weekly or even daily. It is up to you to define how often you need to check in with your goals. Also, enjoy the journey to achieving your goals. One of my goals is to grow a large audience on youtube, I am enjoying the weekly grind of making videos and engaging with my audience as a step to achieving this. It’s the journey, not the destination. You have to enjoy putting the work in or you won’t get very far.

Surround yourself with people who are hungry

Surround yourself with people who get that fire in your belly lit. People who have achieved your goal. People who are positive and inspire you. Your family or close friends may not always get your goal or why you do certain things, that is perfectly fine. I know people find it odd that I go around with a camera strapped to my hand or paint everything in sight pink. When I am feeling a little insecure or lacking drive I reach out to my fellow creators and get fired up. I realise that I am not alone and I get the fuel off their energy. Social media makes it easier to do this. Maybe you are in business? Why not go to an enterprise breakfast in your local area and meet fellow business people. You are the company you keep. Hang around with the people who are successful in your field and watch how inspired you become.

You cant drive forward looking through your rear view mirror

This is a phrase I heard a few weeks ago whilst listening to a Youtube video whilst painting my china cabinet. It was said by Tony Robbins and it was so powerful it stopped me in my tracks. It was like a penny dropping. How can you move forward and progress when you keep looking into the past. Past behaviours, past lessons and experiences can stop you moving forward if you let them. Whatever is holding you back then take some time to reflect and let it go in order to move forward.

I hope you got some inspiration from today’s post. You might also like this chatty video on goal setting that I filmed last year over on my Youtube if you want to check it out.
What are your goals for 2019? Have you got some tips too? Please share in the comments section below.

Happy new year.
Chat soon,



  1. daintydressdiaries
    January 22, 2019 / 5:36 pm

    Thanks so much for reading Pam. I am so glad you enjoyed this post. I love the journey of achieving goals. Keep up the fab work x

  2. Pam Long
    January 22, 2019 / 2:07 pm

    I loved the inspiration I got from this post, I am a goal setter too. Every year I write them down, but last year maybe a third or half way through the year I started reading my goals and amazingly I accomplished over half and many though not finished are nearly done. So this year I am reviewing my goals every morning and evening. Have a wonderful 2019!

  3. Catherine Carton
    December 28, 2018 / 9:05 am

    Thanks so much for reading Theresa! Go kick 2019s ass, have fun chasing your goals! X

  4. theresa
    December 27, 2018 / 12:14 pm

    wow… powerful. I used to always set goals and then as I got older, I let my dreams and desires fall to the way side and just accepted the life I had…but Dammit! you are right!! I'm 60, I want to travel, get another house (used to have one but sold it) pay off debt and get trim again…. it's time I started thinking like a 30 year old and realize I have lots of years and lots of goals I want to achieve. Thanks for the kick in the arse I needed! love your vids and everything you do!! 2019 is MY YEAR!! XOXO

  5. Catherine Carton
    December 27, 2018 / 9:38 am

    Aw yay! Thanks for reading Joanna, I am so glad this post inspired you x happy planning and happy new year x

  6. Catherine Carton
    December 27, 2018 / 9:37 am

    Thank you so much for reading Roberta, I’m so glad you found this post useful, app the best with the blog. You don’t need to go back to school at all, just practise your writing and it will go from strength to strength, I also use the Grammarly app as my spelling and grammar is atrocious and this helps me x

  7. Joanna
    December 27, 2018 / 8:56 am

    Thanks for this! I headed up a page in my notebook as “2019 Goal” weeks ago…but had no idea where to start! I’m going to get stuck in today!

  8. Roberta Stevens
    December 26, 2018 / 11:47 pm

    Catherine. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for this post. I now know that all these years I have not reached my goals because of fear. Fear will paralyze you to the point you never achieve anything. One of my goals for 2019 is to start a blog for aging women, but I afraid because I don't write well and at 66 years old and on a fixed income I can't go back to school to learn. I am determine to reach this goal before the end of 2019. Again thanks and Happy New Year.

  9. Catherine Carton
    January 18, 2018 / 1:47 pm

    Thanks so much for reading Allison, I am so glad you found the post useful and enjoyed the video too x

  10. Catherine Carton
    January 18, 2018 / 1:46 pm

    Thanks Tami, Thanks so much for reading! Happy New Year x x x

  11. Catherine Carton
    January 18, 2018 / 1:45 pm

    Thanks Tami, Thanks so much for reading, Happy New Year! xx

  12. Allison
    January 18, 2018 / 2:06 am

    I just checked YouTube after a crazy holiday season and this really helped me get the year started off on the right foot. Your tips are really great- I've practised some of them myself, but you've given me some new ideas too. I do like these chatty videos every now and then- it feels like we get to sit down and have a nice talk over coffee (or tea). Thank you so much!

  13. Tami Keen
    January 8, 2018 / 8:18 pm

    Thank you so much for this inspiring post! Just what this girl needed to hear. You laid the steps out so clearly & simply! I absolutely love your diy, your channel, blog, Instagram, & Pinterest. Love it all! Keep spreading your joy! The best to you in 2018 & beyond. I look forward to all you share!

  14. Catherine Carton
    December 29, 2017 / 7:15 pm

    Thank you sp much for reading and watching my youtube, that really means a lot that you took the time to come over from my channel. I am so happy you like my blog. I hope you have an amazing 2018 Angela! Tick them goals off your list and enjoy achieving them x

  15. Welcome to Papery Blue
    December 29, 2017 / 5:48 pm

    Hi Catherine, you are an amazing young lady. I found you on you tube first and after your video today about setting goals I wanted to check out your blog/website. I am not too savvy with this social media stuff and am blown away with how well you have everything all linked up. I look forward to trying to get my blog/you tube and social all integrated as beautifully as you! I have had a really tough decade and luckily have been able to draw a line under it all and am starting 2018 afresh with lots to look forward to. I particularly liked your quote from Tony about how you can't drive forward while looking in the rear view mirror. That's me. Rip the bloody thing off I say! Anyway thankyou for your continued inspiration I love seeing your videos pop up on whatever topic (adore your accent as well as your style!) Have yourself a blessed day my dear. Angela Bolton (Papery Blue)

  16. Catherine Carton
    December 29, 2017 / 4:47 pm

    Aw, wow, what a year you have had! I am delighted to hear your operation was a success and you are on the mend, I wish you all health for 2018. Please let me know when you start your blog, it would be an amazing story to share! Thank you so much for reading, commenting and following my blog x Happy New Year!

  17. Cancer Queen
    December 29, 2017 / 4:41 pm

    Hi Catherine �� I’ve just read your blog post on goals and you’ve inspired me to start a blog. It’s something I’ve been thinking about doing for a while but I’ve been afraid to start. Your post and you have inspired me. I’ve been following you for a few months and I think you’re fabulous ❤️ I was diagnosed with advance colon cancer this year. I had my op in September so I’m well on the mend now. I’ve been wanting to blog about my experience for a while but I didn’t know where to start. Today I’ve set up my blog and bought my domain name and I’ll start posting next week. So thank you. You brighten up my day �� Keep being you xx

  18. Catherine Carton
    December 29, 2017 / 1:15 pm

    Thanks so much for reading Lucy, Best of luck achieving your goals in 2018, Happy new year x Keep up the fab work x

  19. Lucy o connell
    December 29, 2017 / 12:58 pm

    Loved this post it is exactly what I needed…..I'm guilty of making excuses and being afraid of failure.. starting to set real meaningful goals in my new diary and planner…..plan do review ��������

  20. Catherine Carton
    December 28, 2017 / 8:37 pm

    I am delighted this post has given you a kick! The buzz you will get once you write down everything and starting achieving! It feels great x

  21. Unknown
    December 28, 2017 / 7:26 pm

    Loved this post! I always think of things I want to do but like so many others I make excuses, I got a diary for Christmas so going to start writing them down and reviewing them often, it’s amazing how reading your post has given me the kick I needed! No more excuses xxx

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