“Failing to plan is planning to fail”
Have you thought about what you want to be doing in five years’ time? Do you know what you want to have achieved by the end of today?
If you want to succeed, you need to set goals. Without goals, you lack focus and direction. To accomplish your goals, however, you need to know how to set them. You can’t simply say, “I want” and expect it to happen. Goal setting is a process that starts with careful consideration of what you want to achieve and ends with a lot of hard work to actually do it. In between, there are some very well defined steps that transcend the specifics of each goal. Knowing these steps will allow you to formulate goals that you can accomplish.
Here are five golden rules of goal setting:
- Set Goals That Motivate You
When you set goals for yourself, it is important that they motivate you: this means making sure that they are important to you, and that there is value in achieving them. Motivation is key to achieving goals.
To make sure your goal is motivating, write down why it’s valuable and important to you. Ask yourself, “If I were to share my goal with others, what would I tell them to convince them it was a worthwhile goal?”
- Set SMART Goals
You have probably heard of smart goals already. But do you always apply the rule? The simple fact is that for goals to be powerful, they should be designed to be SMART. There are many variations of what SMART stands for, but the essence is this – goals should be:
- Time Bound.
- Set Specific Goals
Your goal must be clear and well defined. Remember, you need goals to show you the way. Make it as easy as you can to get where you want to go by defining precisely where you want to end up.
- Set Measurable Goals
Include precise amounts, dates, and so on in your goals so you can measure your degree of success. If your goal is simply defined as “To reduce weight” how will you know when you have been successful? In one month’s time if you have a 1 kg reduction or in two years’ time when you have a 1kg reduction? Without a way to measure your success you miss out on the celebration that comes with knowing you have actually achieved something. Eg I will lose 10 kgs by (set a date).
- Set Attainable Goals
Make sure that it’s possible to achieve the goals you set. If you set a goal that you have no hope of achieving, you will only demoralize yourself and erode your confidence. Eg losing 5kgs in one week is not attainable but losing 0.5kgs or 1kg is.