How To Set Goals & Stick To Them: A Guide For Working Mums 

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“Goals,” you may have muttered to yourself upon reading this headline. “I can barely keep up with my work!”

Needless to say, mothers around the world echo the sentiment about setting goals and maintaining them in the long term. When juggling domestic care with your job, it can be hard to feel like you’ve got your head above the water, let alone that you’re flourishing and setting concrete plans that pave the way for future success. The good news is that it’s all about your mindset. It certainly doesn’t need to be difficult, even if it feels that way right now.

In this article, we’ll lead you down a goldmine of quick tips that are sure to set you on the right foot forward. So, whether you’re thinking about starting a side business, hoping to establish a healthy work-family balance, or if you want to create a work schedule you can actually stick to—whatever the reason—these steps will help you achieve a goal-oriented, productive and happy lifestyle.


Run & Don’t Walk to Claim a 2024 Diary

As a working mum, carving out time to pursue your endeavours, or even allowing yourself a few minutes in the day to breathe may feel impossible. If this is true for you, then it’s time to sharpen your time management skills (and pencils). What better way to do this than using a diary?

Getting a 2024 diary is a great investment for the new year. Write down your career and personal goals in both general outlines and specific time-based manageable chunks. With a diary, you can keep track of what you want to do each day, and monitor your progress throughout the months. It’s an effective way to schedule when you’ll be working as a mum, and when you’ll be working on your own pursuits — or alternatively, when you can take a well-deserved break.

A diary will help you develop healthy habits and may even become a new hobby. For example, many people who use diaries also journal just to get their thoughts out. Journaling can be cathartic as it allows you to express yourself whilst exercising your creative muscle. Even doodling can be rewarding. Ultimately, a diary can have more than one purpose — it’s up to you to choose how you want to use it.


Set SMART Goals

If you’re the kind of woman who requires structure and clear, actionable goals, the SMART goals guideline may be your cup of tea. This clever acronym stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound, and is a great framework for structuring your longer term projections, and considering not only what goals you want to make, but how you’re going to achieve them.


Go tunnel-vision on your goal: make it specified and narrowed. This allows for more efficient planning.


Ensure your goals have a criteria against which they can be measured to evaluate their progress.


Make your goals align with your schedule, in realistic timeframes and manageable quantities.


Check your goals align with your long-term values and ambitions, or ask yourself why it’s important for you to achieve them.

Set deadlines. This will increase motivation and help you prioritise your tasks.

If you have large, long-term goals like completing higher education or starting a side business, using the SMART system has a proven efficiency rate for those with ambitious minds.



“But what if I have no motivation!”

This may sound strange, but exercise is a common technique to help people who are experiencing anxiety or decreased motivation. Your mental health is important. Without good health and wellbeing, achieving goals and maintaining them just won’t be possible. Exercise clears your head and can help get that ambitious streak kicking into gear again. Routine exercise is good for your brain health as well as your body, and can increase the likelihood that you’ll stick to your goals, physical activity-related or not. This is because when exercise becomes a habit, you tend to maintain other habits, too. It’s harmonious, really.

Exercise will also put you in the right mood. Being in the ‘right mood’ is essential for following through with your goals. Whether you jog in the morning, lift some weights at the gym, or perform some stretches from the comfort of your home, any form of exercise when you can fit it in makes a positive difference.

Seek motivation

It’s true that when we hear from others about their successes, we are struck with a bout of inspiration and a keen willingness to achieve our own ambitions. If you’re struggling with putting your goals into practice, watch a short, motivational video or read a motivational quote. This is sure to get your adrenaline pumping.

Particularly, TED Talks videos are a fantastic springboard for productivity. Sometimes all it takes is a little trigger to get you rolling toward your goals. Even setting a motivational quote as your phone’s backdrop, or sticking a motivational poster on your wall can be the reminder that keeps you ticking. This doesn’t have to come from far away either, speak to your child or partner about what inspires them, and ask about their recent successes to help inspire you to achieve yours.


As listed in this article, there are many quick and sturdy tips that will ensure you stick to those goals, so that they don’t become abstract dreams continuously repeated on re-written lists. From diary planning, to actionable goals, to exercise and motivational reminders, there’s a bit of everything to try. Remember: you’re a mum. That’s a special kind of superpower.