When I was prepping to launch my podcast, Kate’s Take, there were a lot of things running through my mind and several different steps I knew I had to take before I could submit my feed to iTunes.
How to set checkpoints to get one step closer to your goal
Funny how most people thought, because I work and live with John Lee, my podcast would just automatically appear out of thin air.
I’ll have you know that I followed every step any other individual would in order to prepare for my launch!
A SMART goal is set
My SMART goal was to submit Kate’s Take: The EOFire Audio Blog to iTunes with 3 episodes live, plus 8 more episodes “in the can”, by August 1, 2014.
Once I set my SMART goal, I put it out there.
I started talking to my mastermind group about it, and I shared my goal with the online communities I was a part of.
Through talking about it, I found my accountability partner: a guy in my mastermind group also happened to be working towards his podcast launch, and so we teamed up to help support one another in reaching our goals.
Our first action item for each other was to put a plan in place and share that plan with one another (including deadlines) so we could hold one another accountable to our plans.
In creating my plan and then putting individual dates on each of my tasks, I realized I was essentially creating checkpoints for myself: different deadlines that, if hit consecutively and consistently, would lead me to my goal of submitting the podcast to iTunes with 3 episodes live on August 1st.
Now, time for checkpoints
I covered in length the exact steps you can take in order to put a plan in place previously. Now I want to focus on how to set actual checkpoints that work with your plan to help you accomplish your goal.
Once you’ve listed out the steps you have to take in order to accomplish your goal (these steps represent your micro-goals), you’ll want to add a date next to each step.
This date will serve as your checkpoint, and it is on that date you’ll set aside one minute to check yourself: did you achieve the micro-goal you set for yourself?
If you’re following along in The Freedom Journal, then your checkpoint is equivalent to your 10-day sprint review, where you gauge your progress.
You’ve already done the tough part: putting a plan in place by identifying the several steps you need to take, in order, to accomplish your big goal.
Setting checkpoints is about scheduling a specific day and time when you’ll do just that: check in with yourself! Did you accomplish the micro-goal you set? If not, good thing you had a checkpoint to keep you on pace to accomplishing your big goal. ;)
Because of the checkpoints I set for my own SMART goal, I was able to submit Kate’s Take: The EOFire Audio Blog to iTunes with 3 episodes live, plus 8 “in the can”, on August 1, 2014.
My checkpoints not only kept me focused, they also forced me to get REAL with the amount of work I had, and how much time I had to do it.
If I were just going to tell myself that I have to have 3 episodes ready and 8 episodes “in the can” in order to submit my RSS feed to iTunes by August 1st, guess what? I probably would have waited until July 30th and found myself scrambling to figure everything out:
- How do I even record an episode in Adobe Audition?
- How long does it take to edit an episode?
- How do I set up my Libsyn feed to maximize SEO in iTunes?
- What’s the process for submitting my feed to iTunes?
Instead, each of these points – and more – were micro-goals I set for myself, with checkpoints to make sure I was staying on track.
Had I waited until the last minute to try and figure all of this out, I never would have been ready to submit my feed to iTunes on August 1st.
Don’t skip checkpoints
There are a lot of stories I could share about goals I’ve set for myself that don’t sound anything like this one.
A few of examples:
- Publishing my first book;
- Leaving my corporate job on Nov 1, 2011;
- Getting paid for my writing;
- Becoming a college professor;
- Cleaning up our tags in Infusionsoft;
- Selling 500 spots for The Fire Path Course;
- I could go on, but you get the picture.
My point is this: every goal I look back on that I didn’t accomplishing has at least 1 thing in common: I never put a plan in place that included checkpoints to help me get one step closer to my goal.
Now that you know what a checkpoint is, how to set them for yourself, and you understand why they’re so integral to helping you get one step closer to accomplishing your goals, the sky is the limit!
Checkpoints are set up for you automatically in The Freedom Journal through your 10-day sprints. At the end of each 10-day sprint throughout your 100 days with The Freedom Journal, you’ll be guided through a checkpoint. If you’re ready to take the guesswork out of setting and accomplishing your #1 goal in 100 days, then head over to TheFreedomJournal.com and grab your copy today!