The start of a New Year is traditionally a time for setting goals, making resolutions or even starting afresh. Maybe travel has been on your mind lately, with dreams of visiting new places. Although January is almost over, it does not mean that you have missed your opportunity to think about what you will do with 2019! Today is always the best day to make a decision or change!
Big changes are rarely easy, so start with some small changes first. Your life or situation will begin to change almost without you realizing. You can track changes with a diary or blog to evaluate your progress. Set SMART Goals – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Timely – to help you make your travel dreams come true.
Decide what you want to do and be Specific: don’t say I want to travel, rather say: I want to visit/see the Redwoods in California or the White House or maybe even Disneyland or wherever you have always wanted to go.
Traveling always involves money and time, so research your costs, decide on your budget and when you want to go. It could be that you want to spent no more than $xxx on flights or gas, $xxx on hotels and you want to go in the summer or the fall. Then you need a plan for saving the money and a way to track that you are on target!
When you have done your research on costs and have a plan for saving money, then you need to decide if you can do it. There is no point in setting yourself up for failure. If you realize that saving $xx every month is not going to work, then you need to rethink your goal. Very few goals are set in stone and they can be revised if appropriate. Life has a habit of changing and often in unexpected ways. Revising a goal does not denote failure, rather it shows a determination to succeed.
This is where setting specific and achievable goals come together. It would be lovely to travel first class and stay in the very best hotels. But if that will use up most of your hard earned savings, then your plans are not very realistic. You may not be able to do much else at your chosen destination! But if travelling first class and staying in the best hotels is what you really want to do, then perhaps your savings will need to increase or you might need to move your trip time to later than you originally planned.
Goals without deadlines, set dates or plans are just Dreams. Make your dreams a reality by setting a date and setting small time targets along the way. For example if you need a passport, then set an application date that will ensure you have it in time for your trip. Check each month that you are on target for your savings by knowing how much you need to save each month.
So what are your New Year plans for 2019? Where do you want to visit? Who do you want to travel with? How will you get there? What do you need to take? So many questions……
Here on the Get Packin’ Blog we plan to visit one state a month, finding places for good food and activities. Will it be Florida or Georgia or maybe Oregon or Texas? All will be revealed next month…