New Year’s Goal Setting for Fiber Artists

It’s that time of the year when some of us set goals for the upcoming year. For me I make a goal, forget until about May, then try again and forget again until October.  Or I can’t decide if I actually met my goal.

photo

Over the past couple years I learned how to set better goals at my work for myself and others. We use the SMART goal system, which I like.  I modify it a bit for my personal goals (which I’ll talk about later this month) but its a valid system I hope will help you. To be fair, I’m one of those people who really likes planning. We’re going to go through each of the steps one by one with two examples.  You might get done and want to go back and tweak what you’ve already done.

S = Specific

M = Measurable

A = Attainable

R = Realistic

T = Time Relevant

S     Let’s start with Specific.  Setting a specific goals requires you really think about what you want to achieve.  What do you want to focus on? How do you want to achieve that goal? Having a goal of “become a better knitter” doesn’t indicate what you really want to do.  Become more efficient? Learn new skills? Tackle a sweater?  To become a better spinner you might think about spinning a more consistent bulky yarn, try a new technique (art yarn) or spin on a regular basis.

Let’s use two goals for our example going forward: 1. Knit more efficiently and 2. Spin on a regular basis

M     Measurable.  This one pretty simple – make your goal something you can track and quantify.  I love this step for those very reasons.  How will you know when your goal has been achieved? Going forward with our two example – our knit more efficient needs to be measurable.  How can we measure efficiency? Yards knit over a period of time? Stitches per minute? The yards knit over a period time would be hard to count so I’ll go with stitches per minute.  I don’t know what my starting point is so I’ll set a percentage increase.  So now my knitting goal is “Improve knitting efficiency by increasing stitches per minute by 75%.”  For spinning on a regular basis we need to define “regular basis.”  I’ve seen on Instagram today a #15in15 and people have suggested spinning 15 minutes a day, spinning 15 pounds in 2015 or spinning 15 ounces a month.  Let’s go with spinning 15 minutes a day.

1. Improve knitting efficiency by increasing stitches per minute by 75%

2. Spin 15 minutes per day.

A     Attainable. Start thinking about a plan for how you will achieve your goal.  Do you need new skills, capabilities or money to achieve your goal? If you’re goal to spin art yarn do you need to buy some locks or strips of silk? Do you have the financial ability to buy those materials? It might help to think about what you need to obtain your goals.

1. Improve knitting efficiency by increasing stitches per minute by 75% after researching/learning about lever knitting.

2. Spin 15 minutes per day. [Trust me –  I do not need additional fiber for this]

R     Realistic.  So, um, don’t set a goal that is such a push that you won’t be able to complete it.  It should be enough to push you but not so much as to cause you stress.  Unless you function well under stress and like it.  Making a realistic goal means you are willing and able to do the work.  If you have a full-time job and family to care for spinning 50 hours a week is probably not realistic.  Your goal can be high, and sometimes those goals are the ones that push you, but they still need to be realistic.  In regards to our sample goals – the 75% is pretty aggressive. Let’s pull that down a bit.

1. Improve knitting efficiency by increasing stitches per minute by 60% after researching/learning about lever knitting.

2. Spin 15 minutes per day.

T     Time Relevant.  This is pretty easy – set a time-frame for your goal.  Do you want to give yourself the year? Or until summer? Maybe you have one goal you want to focus on January through June and another goal for July through December.  You could also consider having mini-goals.  If you want to improve 75% over the year you might set a mini-goal of 25% by April, 50% by August and 75% by December.

1. Improve knitting efficiency by increasing stitches per minute by 60% after researching/learning about lever knitting.

2. Spin 15 minutes per day.

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under Knitting, Spinning, Tutorials

2 responses to “New Year’s Goal Setting for Fiber Artists

  1. Pingback: 2016 Goals | FloofyMoose's Blog

  2. Pingback: 2017 Goals | FloofyMoose's Blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s