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GOAL SETTING FOR SUCCESS

Uncategorized Jun 14, 2020

I messed up.

Last month, I posted a blog article called Top Ten Tips for Achieving Your Goals.  It was a concise summary of the factors that go in to making my goals become reality.  I enjoyed writing that post and sharing what I’ve learned over the years on goal achievement.  And the bonus was receiving positive feedback from folks who struggle with achieving their goals.  

Well, that was all wonderful until I realized that I left out a very important part of my discussion on goals. 

I didn’t include the beginning.

Yes, I should have started that article by going over goal basics so that those new to the concept could actually create a goal to achieve.

So, allow me to fix that by sharing more of what I’ve learned about the goal setting process.  In this post, I will take you all the way back to the beginning by going over the what, why and how when it comes to goals.        

 

WHAT ARE GOALS?

I define a goal as a desired future outcome that is achieved through planned effort.  Goals are not miracles or accidents.  They are purposeful ideas that encourage us to take specific actions.

 

“A GOAL WITHOUT A PLAN IS JUST A WISH.”
– ANTOINE DE SAINT-EXUPÉRY

 

WHY SET GOALS? 

Goals help satisfy our ambitions by giving us something to accomplish and by fulfilling our need for achievement.  

  • Goals provide focus. 
    When goals are created properly, they give you a road map that provides direction and boundaries for our attention.  With direction and boundaries, you don’t need to waste effort on unnecessary tasks.  You always know what you should be doing.     
  • Goals provide motivation.
    The anticipated outcome of a goal drives you to take action. You are also more likely to complete necessary tasks when you can see that they are directly tied to a desired result.  Also, completing tasks makes you feel more confident and ready to tackle another one.  This creates a success cycle.
  • Goals provide alignment.
    They tie your overall purpose and values to desired behaviors and outcomes.  People who have a strong sense of their mission in life have a much easier time going through a goal setting process that results reinforces their important principles.

 

“WITHOUT DREAMS AND GOALS, THERE IS NO LIVING, ONLY MERELY EXISTING, AND THAT IS NOT WHY WE ARE HERE.”
– MARK TWAIN

 

HOW TO SET GOALS 

Goal setting is a process that starts with your dreams and leads to the creation of a new reality. 

  • Dreams.  Start by brainstorming a list of long-term dreams that you would like to become reality.  Ask yourself, “What would I like to have, do or be in about 10 years from now?”  Be very open-minded when you make your list and give yourself the freedom to be creative. 
  • Objectives.  Organize your long-term dreams into mid-range objectives.  Look at your list of dreams and pick out the ones that are most important to you.  Determine what needs to be achieved in approximately three to five years to keep you in line with achieving your dreams.     
  • Goals.  Break these mid-range objectives down into shorter-term goals. In this step, identify what needs to be done in a year or less to keep you on track for accomplishing your objectives and dreams.  This is where you are going to focus your immediate energy and effort.   

 

GET SMARTER

It is very important to design goals to be very effective since they are going to be your focal point for immediate action.  The most popular goal setting system is the SMART method.  Each letter in the word “smart” represents a characteristic of effective goals.  I like to add a few more letters at the end to make my goals even SMARTER. 

 

SPECIFIC

The “S” stands for specific. Your goal must be clear, well defined and focused on one outcome.  Here you should avoid making statements that are vague and fluffy.  Get precise with your wording so that you (and others) will know exactly what the goal is meant to accomplish.

 

MEASURABLE

The “M” stands for measurable. Here, you want to make sure that your goal can be measured in some way so that it can be monitored for progress and completion.  Most measurable goals include a specific number of whatever is to be achieved. 

 

ATTAINABLE

The “A” stands for attainable. The best goals are challenging, but they are also achievable.  When you get too ambitious, your chances for being unsuccessful are greater and this will ruin your motivation for doing anything at all.  

 

RELEVANT

The “R” stands for relevant. Your goals should help you get closer to your objectives and dreams.  Starting the goal setting process with the big picture in mind allows you to focus on goals that will actually get you to accomplishing things that really matter to you.  

 

TIME-BOUND

The “T” stands for time-bound. When writing your goals, always include a deadline for completion to motivate yourself with a sense of urgency.  Clear timeframes also allow us to budget our efforts over the duration.  It is hard to maintain focus indefinitely.  

 

EVALUATED

This “E” stands for evaluated.  You should have a system for evaluating and revising your goals as your dreams, objectives and circumstances change over time.  Goals should be evaluated regularly to ensure that they are leading to the desired outcome.

 

REALISTIC

This “R” stands for realistic.  Make sure that you have a manageable number of goals, and design them with your actual capabilities and resources in mind.  Setting unrealistic goals will only lead to frustration.

 

TWO HUGE GOAL SETTING TIPS

  • Write your goals down!
    Studies show that you are 42 percent more likely to achieve your goal if you write it down.  Writing down your goals helps you think them out and reminds you of what needs to be done. And don’t just write your goal down once.  I write mine down every morning to keep them at the top of my mind.
  • Create an affirmation for each goal.
    Affirmations are repeatable, positive statements that you say to yourself in order to attract desired outcomes to your life.  Affirmation statements describe the end state as if it has already happened.  One of my personal affirmations is, “I am the author of a popular non-fiction book.” I repeat it often and write it daily.

 

“SETTING GOALS IS THE FIRST STEP IN TURNING THE INVISIBLE INTO THE VISIBLE.”
– TONY ROBBINS

By Brook Mayborne

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