The Fundamentals of Goal-Setting
Have you heard that you’re 97% more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down? The truth is that goal setting is important. In fact, it’s without goal setting you may never achieve the dreams of your heart.
Every person in the world devotes countless hours to thinking of their future and their present situation in life. Almost everyone wishes that there was something that they could change in their life.
Whether you dream of a new car, a boat, or even to be a movie star, goal setting is the important catalyst to your success. So let’s get started because you will learn the fundamentals of goal setting, which begins with – how to choose the RIGHT goals to focus on.
Many of us are great at trying to set goals; most of us are practically incapable of following through with them. Think about it. How many times have you decided on a course of action and simply didn’t follow through with it?
That is pretty much the norm for most people. Sometimes even setting goals at all is the harder part of accomplishing any. The easiest way of looking at this is to think of each and every New Year.
What is the biggest topic of conversation every year on New Year’s Eve? It is actually the resolutions. But most us will only keep our resolutions for a short time. With each passing day and week, fewer and fewer of us STICK to our plans and our goals!
Sometimes setting goals alone is not the only problem that you must face. Sometimes, choosing the right goals to begin with is harder. Basically, you can choose to work any goal that you feel is necessary for your health, stability and happiness.
Goal setting is nothing more than a formal process for personal planning. By setting goals on a routine basis you decide what you want to achieve, and then move in a step-by-step manner towards the achievement of these goals.
Succeeding At Goal Setting
Why is it that some people almost always succeed?
Here are four strategies to assist you to start changing the way you live your life, one day and one goal at a time.
In summary they are:
- State your goal in very specific terms that you can accept
- Plan backwards from your goal for the best results
- Confront your fears and expectations immediately and progressively
- Put your plan on paper and into action as soon as possible
Let’s go through how this works:
Planning a career move is much like mapping your route for a road trip. If youdon’t know where you are going, you can’t decide how to get there, but if you do know where you are going, you’ll get there faster.
Goals like ‘going back to school’ are too general and not specific enough. You have to translate these goals into specific statements such as “Enter a college accounting program by next fall” or “For the next two months, search for work in the computer securities field.”
You have to know exactly what you want to do and when to go about it.
One of the best ways to move forward is to plan backwards.
Start by asking yourself if you can accomplish your goal today. If you can’t why do you think that is? What do you have to do first? Is there something you have to do before that? Keep thinking backwards like this until you arrive at tasks you could do today. This will help you to attain the goal’s starting point.
For example, if your goal is to take a two-year business administration program, could you start today? No, you have to be accepted to the program first. Could you be accepted today? No, you have to apply first. Could you apply today? No, you have to decide which post-secondary institutions to apply to. Could you decide today? No, you have to do some research first and so on. I could do this all day but you get the point. Don’t worry if your list of things to do becomes several lists.
Deal with your fears and expectations of yourself
Look over your list of things you will have to do to achieve your goal. Do you believe that you can do it? If you have doubts, take some time to think them through first.
Are your expectations realistic? Have you succeeded or failed at tasks that were similar to this before? Whatcan you do to improve your chances of success this time around?
For example, if there is a good chance you will not follow through with your plans, you have to ask yourself why.
Are you a professional procrastinator? If so, what can you do to make sure that you will keep going until you reach your goal? Are you afraid of failing?
If so, work at improving the skills you will need. Or test the waters by taking an evening or distance education course before you sign up for a whole program. If you are having trouble identifying your fears or figuring out how to deal with them, talk to people you trust. Ask for their suggestions, but always make your own decisions.
Put your plan into action from to do list
By this stage, you probably have more than one list of things to do and, if it is necessary, some plans foravoiding or dealing with potential problems. Now you need to put them all together into one comprehensive plan.
You must list tasks in the order in which you must complete them and set deadlines for the completion of any major plans.
Successful career planners keep themselves on track using a variety of methods, such as:
- Marking tasks on a monthly calendar (noting important dates such as application deadlines or action plans)
- Making weekly or daily lists of things to do and cross off tasks as they are completed
- Using a computer program to create timeline charts which give you your time limits for task completion
- Using a commercial appointment book or a notebook; even a palm pilot with a new page for eachday or
- Use whatever methods work best for you. If it is absolutely necessary, ask a friend to check on your progressoccasionally or question you on your successes because you are more likely to get things done if you know you’ll be asked about
Now you have learned a new way to set goals and follow them through. If you follow these four steps, there is nothing to hold you back.