Goal setting is a powerful process that allows you to formulate a plan for achieving everything you want out of your life and your career.
Following the 11 steps outlined below will enable you to focus your energy, and avoid wasting valuable time and resources in areas that are not in alignment with your life and career goals.
- 1 1. Be specific about what you want.
- 2 2. Make sure the goal that you set is measurable.
- 3 3. Make sure your goal is realistic and attainable.
- 4 4. Your goal should excite you.
- 5 5. Make your goal timely.
- 6 6. Write it down.
- 7 7. Break it down.
- 8 8. Take actionable steps.
- 9 9. Be open to change.
- 10 10. Reward your success.
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1. Be specific about what you want.
The more specific you are about what you want to achieve, the more likely it is that you will achieve it. By knowing exactly what you want the outcome to be, it is also much easier it is to stay on track and not get distracted.
Example: A general goal would be: “I want to write a book.” A specific goal would be: “I am going to write 5 pages a day and have an initial draft ready by August 15, 2018.”
2. Make sure the goal that you set is measurable.
Another easy way to stay motivated and on track is to make sure that you have measurable criteria built in, such as target dates, amounts, and action steps. Measurable criteria is anything that can be checked off that can give you an idea of your progress. In the previous example, writing 5 pages a day would be a measurable criteria.
3. Make sure your goal is realistic and attainable.
Your goals should be doable and should also be something that you truly believe that you can achieve. Examine your goals carefully and make sure that you have the qualifications, resources, and skills to accomplish them.
4. Your goal should excite you.
Whatever excites and thrills you also inspires and motivates you. When you begin with goals that are fueled by your passion, you are already half-way there.
5. Make your goal timely.
Setting a definitive time frame for the completion of your goals makes them seem more real to you, and helps keep you on track. Knowing there is a deadline creates an increased sense of urgency to take action, that might not be there otherwise.
6. Write it down.
Writing your goals down keeps helps to cement them in your mind and provides visual confirmation of your commitment to obtaining your dreams.
7. Break it down.
If your goal seems daunting or too big to handle right off the bat, then break it down into several smaller, more manageable goals.
8. Take actionable steps.
For each individual goal, make a list (ie: an action plan) of the steps that you need to take to begin moving forward, then begin taking whatever action is indicated.
9. Be open to change.
After you begin taking action towards your goal, you may experience unexpected things and snags. Don’t get discouraged, simply stop and reevaluate your action plan and make any necessary changes so that you can continue moving forward.
10. Reward your success.
Set up some type of benefit system and reward yourself for successfully reaching certain milestones along the way to your goals. Rewards help to acknowledge your hard work and provide additional incentive to keep on track.