How to Set Monthly Goals after Cancer Treatment
Updated: Aug 16, 2022
It is important after cancer treatment to take time for yourself to focus on where you want to be and setting achievable, meaningful goals will help you to get there.
Breaking down bigger goals into flexible weekly and monthly activities is a great way to work towards a bigger plan.
At the start of each month, the Life after Cancer community meets up for a goal-setting workshop where we clarify our focus and goals for the month.
If you are unable to attend our goal-setting workshop, follow the activity below to set your own monthly goals at home.
5 Steps To Monthly Goal Setting After Cancer
During this monthly goal-setting activity, you will :
Clarify your focus for the month
Clarify your goals for the month
Work on a 30-day plan
You can complete this activity on paper or on your phone, whichever you prefer.
1. Goal setting and visioning after cancer
"If you want to reach a goal, you must 'see the reaching' in your own mind before you actually arrive at your goal." Zig Ziglar
Take time to answer the following questions :
Clarify what you want to achieve by the end of the month?
How will you know when you have achieved it? (What will you see, hear, feel or be doing?)
What else in your life will improve when you achieve it?
What resources do you already have which can help you achieve this outcome?
What is something similar that you succeeded in doing? Look for the evidence.
2. Write down your actions
What actions would you like to set that will take you closer to achieving your goal/s?
Break these actions down into small actions that you can complete every day over the next month
Whilst answering these questions remember to ask yourself :
Are these actions moving you closer to your end goal?
Are these actions in keeping with who you are? If not, now is the time to change course.
You will be left with something like this table below, with your goals being broken down into small, achievable actions for each day.
Actions to take
7:30 am - Journal for 10 mins before getting out of bed (Sun- Thurs)
Improve flexibility with regular stretching
12:15 pm- 15-minute Yoga practice before lunch (Sun- Thurs)
Read new book
9:30 pm - Read for 15 minutes in bed (Sun- Thurs)
3. Create your monthly action tracker
When you have a clear idea of your daily or weekly goals and the actions you need to take, transfer this into an action tracker for the month.
Having an easy to follow visual aid allows you to see what actions you have each day/week and you can tick these off as you achieve them.
4. Find an accountability partner
In our online goal-setting workshops, we pair up with an accountability partner for the month. The purpose of an accountability buddy is to hold each other accountable for actions.
Did you know that you have a 65% chance of completing a goal if you commit to someone?
If you have a specific accountability appointment with a person you've committed to, you will increase your chance of success by up to 95%!
Do you know someone that you can buddy up with to share and achieve your goals? It could be a friend, a family member, a partner or a colleague.
If you do pair up with a buddy it is important to clarify in advance :
What you will do
When you will do it
What support do you need from your accountability buddy
How will you report back to your accountability buddy when you have taken this step / completed your action?
5. Review your achievements at the end of the month
Goal reviews are incredibly beneficial to the goal setting and achieving process. Taking time out to do this each month allows you to :
Track your goal progress throughout the year. It is easy to overlook the smaller achievements along the way when focussing on the big picture.
Take notice and celebrate your wins, this will inspire and motivate you to continue progressing with your goals.
Modify and review your goals if / when things are not working for you.
Practice gratitude. Gratitude and goal setting go hand in hand. Recognising your efforts can help you keep up the momentum.
Additional goal setting resources
Here are our favourite digital and physical planners we use to set and track our goals :
Habit - Daily Tracker App
MiGoals - Desk Calendar
The 3-2-1 Digital Newsletter - James Clear
Productivity Planner - Intelligent Change
Dr Hazel Wallace (The Food Medic) - THE HABIT JOURNAL
Would you like to try this activity in an online support group with other adults who have completed cancer treatment? We'd love to welcome you along to our free monthly goal-setting workshop.
Our Life after Cancer goal-setting workshop meets online on the first Thursday of each month to clarify and prioritise our goals for the month ahead. The session is facilitated by a Life after Cancer coach who will guide you through the session and pair you up with an accountability buddy.
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