08 May Setting Goals for Success
I recently posted on my social media about the topic of goal setting and received an interesting reaction. Lots of people got in touch to say that setting and sticking to goals was something they struggled with so I’ve decided to share my tips in the hope I can help others.
For years now, I’ve set myself multiple goals at any given time. I find that by defining what it is I want to achieve gives me focus and a way to measure my progress. Some of my goals are personal, for example; cutting out meat and dairy to eat a plant-based diet, others are purely career based such as becoming a National Group Leader. I also have a mix of short term and long-term goals and I am proud to nearing a goal that has been years in the making.
No matter what the goal is, I apply the same principles which are as follows:
- Think about the bigger picture. What is it that you are looking to achieve? Do you want to start your own business or buy your first property? Whatever it may be, the first step is to think about what you are working towards and clearly define it.
- Write it down. I find that writing down my goals really helps me to keep focus. This can be an enjoyable process as it gives you total power to define exactly what it is you want to achieve. By clearly defining your goals you can refer to them at any given time which is useful for tracking progress or simply reminding yourself why you’re working so hard!
- Break it down into bite sized chunks. It can be overwhelming to be faced with a big challenge, so I always break it down into smaller tasks and allocate myself a time frame to achieve these steps. For example: if your goal is to run a marathon in 6 months it would be no good attempting to do so tomorrow. You would need to create a training programme that slowly builds up to running a whole marathon and commit to achieving each distance you’ve set yourself.
- Prioritise – By putting your smaller challenges in order of priority you immediately have an action plan to be getting on with. It’s important not to be too rigid when it comes to your priority list as things may change as you make progress. To go back to the analogy of purchasing your first property; initially having the garden landscaped before moving in may have been one your high priorities at the start, but when it comes down to it you decide that sorting the inside of the house is more important and you can live with the garden as it is. It’s important to have some priorities but flexibility is key.
- Review –Regularly reviewing your goals and action plan is important for a number of reasons. Firstly, it can be a very motivational and positive exercise as it will enable you to see how much progress you have made. In addition, it allows you to adapt your priorities or even add to your goals if appropriate. Make it a weekly commitment to review your goals and that way you’ll always be totally honest with yourself as to where you are.
It is inevitable that at some point you will face set-backs but what’s important is how you react to them.
My approach is to always focus on the bigger picture. Maybe a business deal didn’t work out, this doesn’t mean I’ll never do business again. What it does mean is that I need to evaluate why this may have happened and how I can prevent it from happening again.
Next, I will go back to my list of goals and remind myself what it is I am working towards. Life is full of opportunities and if we keep positive, motivated and work hard we can make the most of these opportunities regardless of the set backs.
The road to achieving your goal(s) can be a turbulent one during which there will be hard times among the good times. It’s easy to over look this once you finally achieve what you’ve been working towards.
Once you reach your goal it is important to allow yourself time to acknowledge your success and be satisfied by the feeling. Remind yourself that it’s been a challenge, but you’ve been strong enough to accomplish what you set out to do. You can now apply everything you learned through the process to achieving the rest of the goals on your list.
Goal setting is a powerful process for thinking about your ideal future, and for motivating yourself to turn your vision into reality. For more business and mentoring content follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin.