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How to Set Goals
January 18, 2021
How to Set Goals
Setting goals is something you have to learn how to do effectively, and it will be an ongoing process as you grow and develop your skills. Creating goals and following through can be difficult at first, especially if you have not structured your goal to give you a decent chance of winning!
How to Define your Goals
Ask yourself what you want to achieve, and write it down at the top of a sheet of paper.
Divide the rest of the page into three columns: a specific description of the goal with a realistic deadline, reasons why you want to achieve the goal, and obstacles that might make it hard.
• Figure out the 'why'.
For example, your goal might be to run a marathon. In this case, a specific description and deadline might be to run a 26.2-mile marathon at the end of six months. In the ‘reasons why’ column you should put any number of things - to build strength and endurance, to support a cause, to feel better physically, etc.
• Anticipate the obstacles.
Once you've clarified your reasons for wanting to achieve this particular goal, move on to obstacles. Create a game plan to ease your way into a solid routine - make each step something you can succeed at and the next step will be that much easier.
• Break it down.
If you create milestones for your goal it will become instantly easier to achieve - instead of looking at the top of the mountain, you are just looking for at the next segment of the trail, the next rock ledge where you can take a breather.
• Divide and conquer.
Split your goal into bite sized pieces; start with a half mile for a week, then a half mile walking and a half mile running, and gradually increase until you can do the full course with ease! If you build slowly, form a firm foundation, your goal will be accomplished almost before you realize it.
• Plan ahead.
A goal setting worksheet can help immensely if you need a little boost to get started. You can lay out your goal in all its glory and then track your progress day by day. A sample worksheet could include:
1. What do you want to achieve? Name your goal below:
Describe your goal, being as specific as possible:
3. Set a deadline for the completion of your goal:
4. Why do you want to achieve this goal?
5. List obstacles and how you plan to overcome them:
6. Name three qualities you have which will help you reach your goal:
Worksheets like these can be a useful aid to help you plan and follow through on achieving your goal.
You should also create a SMART sheet for your goal to help you anchor your plan firmly in your mind and ensure that your goal is something you can actually pull off.
SMART Goal Setting
SMART goal setting lets you define and refine the five characteristics which should be present in your goal:
Specific goals are much more likely to be accomplished. Ask the following questions to create SMART sheet:
• WHO is involved?
Smart goals depend on YOU, no-one else. A buddy is OK, but your success should be tied to nothing but your own performance. Of course, there are team building scenarios where more people involved, but here we are talking about your own personal goal setting that doesn't require anybody else, but YOU.
• WHAT do you want to accomplish?
'Lose weight' is not a goal. 'Lose ten lbs by June 1st so I can fit in the bridesmaid dress' is. Define the hoped for end-result, and you will have a clear idea of what you are aiming for.
• WHERE will you work on your goal?
The gym? The library? The basement? Identify a location to carry out most of the work.
• WHEN do you hope to accomplish your goal?
This is your timeline, which again, can be broken up into segments to keep you motivated and on track. Set a specific deadline for completion.
• WHICH factors will affect the success of your goal?
If you are fully prepared for obstacles, they will be that much easier to surmount, so imagine the scenarios and how you can deal with them.
• WHY do you want to reach this goal?
The reasons behind your choice of a goal are just as important as the goal itself.
Smart goals are measurable.
You have to be able to see the progress you are making and the final results. Finding out if your goal is truly measurable is as simple as asking another set of questions:
• How much (extra income do I want to generate)?
• How many (pounds do I want to lose)?
• How will I know when the goal is reached?
Not easy, but definitely doable, with effort. They should fall into the category of 'I know I could do it if I really tried'. Really try. Every time you succeed, you are building a platform from which the next goal can be tackled.
Smart goals are realistic.
They not only take into account what you are capable of, but what you are willing to do and what your circumstances permit. A goal can be high and still be realistic. Don't set goals that are sure to end in defeat - that's a cop-out.
If you set a goal that is impossible to reach thinking "Well, at least I can say I tried" you are setting yourself up for failure and you need to figure out why. Stop, regroup, and ease up on yourself; then set a goal that you can succeed at. Don't
Smart goals are timely.
If you don’t have a deadline set for reaching your goal, you have no real motivation to get on with it. Setting a date for the completion of your goal puts you in motion mentally and sets the pace for your efforts, culminating in success
SMART goal setting takes into account all of the guidelines above. If your goal is SMART, you'll be simultaneously developing the right state of mind and getting things done.
The 10 Magic Steps Formula for GOAL SETTING
In order for you to set realistic goals and achieve them, you must build a solid framework for future goal setting and self improvement.
1. Be specific! Examine your life, figure out what you want to change, then pick one specific thing you can realistically change in a specific time period. Start small, build big.
2. Write down your goal. Post it as a customized screensaver or a note on the fridge or your bathroom mirror to keep your goal in front of you.
3. Break your goal down into milestones. Mark your calendar with a completion date for each step, to make reaching your goal look easier.
4. Get backup. Tell someone about your goal, and ask for help. Friends and family members can provide invaluable support.
5. Reward yourself. When you complete each step towards your goal, give yourself a small but tangible reward. An hour with a new book, a trip to the spa - even just sleeping in for an hour.
6. Mix achievement with affirmation. Positive affirmations can get you psyched about your goal, and reassure you that you have what it takes to last the course.
7. Use every trick at your disposal to reach your goal. If that means getting up while everyone is in bed to work on your goal undistracted, do it!
8. There’s no shame in asking for help. If you just can’t get up the energy to work on your goal, ask someone to help you get over the hump.
9. Don’t let momentum fade after reaching your goal. Set another goal. Goal setting is an ongoing process, leading to bigger and better things each time.
10. Never, never, never give up. Fight for the person you know you can be. Set goals that make you push yourself towards change, but don't fall apart if you fail on the first attempt. Lower the bar a hair and try again.
Be your own strongest supporter, and you will find your goals get set higher and higher as you grow and increase your ability to succeed.
Self-Esteem Building Action GuideI have created a self-esteem and self confidence building action guide especially designed for you. I would say; I worked hard to make it easy for you. :)
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