As we get closer to the beginning of a new year, we tie up the loose ends of 2020 and start 2021. I wanted to talk about goal setting. By setting goals you give yourself mental boundaries, long term vision and a short term vision to make your plans.
What Is Goal Setting?
According to Wikipedia the exact definition of a goal is: A desired result a person or a system envisions, plans, and commits to achieve a personal or organizational desired ending point in some sort of assumed development. Many people endeavor to reach goals within a finite time by setting deadlines. So the next time you are planning on doing the weekly chores or decide on watching that really cool action movie after work, always keep in mind that these small tasks account as goals and while seemingly insignificant you are goal setting.
Why Is Goal Setting Important?
Aristotle once said, “well begun is half done.” In other words, if you do something well at the beginning, you are halfway to a successful completion. Setting goals is the beginning and when you set a goal for yourself you make yourself accountable to finish the task. Planning your future regardless of what it is, is goal setting. If you want to succeed, you need to set goals.
Having goals for things we want to do and working towards them is an important part of being human. The path towards our goals may not always run smoothly or be easy, but having goals, is part of what makes life good.
By setting goals for yourself you can measure your progress because you always have a fixed endpoint or benchmark to compare with. It gives us a sense of meaning and purpose, points us in the direction we want to go and gets us interested and engaged. All of which are good for our overall happiness.
Setting goals gives you long-term vision and short-term motivation. It focuses your acquisition of knowledge. Setting goals helps you to organize your time and your resources so that you can make the most of your life. Goal setting not only allows you to take control of your life’s direction, but it also provides you a benchmark for determining whether you are succeeding. Without goals you lack focus and direction.
Where Do I Start?
This quote comes from Steve Garvey, a former professional baseball player. He said: “You have to set goals that are almost out of reach. If you set a goal that is attainable without much work or thought, you are stuck with something below your true talent and potential.” So I Say set a goal that you have no clue how to reach it. This will make you reach out to people that can help you or do some research to obtain it. Either way you need to learn something new. I am a strong believer in you never stop learning and this is a way to force it to happen.
After you have set the almost obtainable goal then let’s start with the long-term goals, 10-year and 5-year goals. Take some time sit back and really think about it. Don’t just say I want to be a millionaire. Who doesn’t? Let’s get specific Like I want to own my own construction company building new houses. This is specific enough to know what direction I want to go to get there. But do not just stop at one goal over a 10-year period.
Set Goals In Writing
The physical act of writing down a goal makes it real. You are 42 percent more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down. Writing your goals down not only forces you to get clear on what exactly, it is that you want to accomplish, but doing so plays a part in motivating you to complete the tasks necessary for your success You have no excuse for forgetting about it.
Writing down your goals helps create a vision in your mind of how you want to be in the future. You can visually see the goal and understand the difference it will make in your life. When we see something clearly it creates change in how we act as we have clarity and direction. So, post your goals in visible places to remind yourself every day of what it is you intend to do. Put them on your walls, desk, computer monitor, bathroom mirror or refrigerator as a constant reminder.
You have set your long-term goals and wrote them down. You have them on the fridge and all over the house and at work. Now it’s time to look at how we get there. We can start on the yearly goal. Think about how to get to your 5-years goal. What do you need to do to get to your five-year goal? If going with the previous example you are looking to become a contractor in year one you would need to take a test or some classes to pass the test to get your contractor’s license. Getting a business license or insurance could be another goal.
Every Little Step
The goals you can break into steps that can become daily, weekly and maybe even monthly goals. White these down too post them up where you can see them. Sometimes a To-Do list is a good way to make these goals. If you use a To-Do List , make yourself a To-Do List template that has your long-term goals at the top of it.
Sometimes you get so focused on the outcome that you forget to plan all the steps that are needed along the way. By writing out the individual steps, and then crossing each one off as you complete it, you’ll realize that you are making progress towards your ultimate goal. When you start to reach your goals it feels good and you will want to do it again.
This is especially important if your goal is big and demanding, or long-term. Let’s say that your long term is to become debt free and you have a huge debt with school bills, car loan, credit cards, and your mortgage payment. Let’s start with the credit cards for a couple reasons. First reason it is probably the lowest amount second is that it is probably the highest interest. You would make a budget ( I will cover this in my next blog post) Take any extra money and put it to the cards. When you pay one off you will feel so much better then it gives you more money to put toward the next one.
Goals are the first step towards planning for the future it is up to you to take that step. Like the child that is learning how to walk you can’t just stop after one step keep the momentum going forward. soon you will be on your way and checking off goals. If you would like help on making a goal contact me.