On Goal Setting
by Tara Brooke, author of “Beautiful Ambition: My Secrets to Love, Happiness & Success“
The truth is that we have choices in every single moment of our lives. For those who are destitute however, the choices in life are less, fewer and far between (if at all!). But, as for the rest of us… let us set the records straight for once! We often think we don’t have freedom when we simply haven’t claimed our power to choose differently!
So how can you be open to choosing differentl’ and better? For once, be clear about what it is that you do want. Have a sense of purpose. With a target to aim for, you’ll know what will serve you best.
This one amazingly simple step that really successful people take is to plan their lives in detail on paper (to start)… and then, they actually work their plan. And when I say detail – I mean every detail. They wrote down a plan for every aspect of their lives and then they went after it. Step, by step, by step.
Now let us get down to business! Here is a tough question for you. Are you working someone else’s plan for your life? If you are not getting what you want from life, it is probably because you have allowed someone else to design your life plan. This could be your parents, your spouse, your boss, the government, even your friends, that might oblige and be happy to plan and map your life for you. But this is not the fast track to success – if anything, it is the slow boat to mediocrity. Success is a do-it-to-yourself proposition, that comes from designing the life you want and deserve and then taking significant action to achieve it.
Stop and ask yourself in-depth, get-real type questions like: “Why am I doing this? What do I want to achieve?”
Write down your answers. Use your journal. Get in the habit of carrying and using your journal as a success tool. Be more conscious of how you are spending your precious time, because this is your life passing by. This will help you start to recognize where you’re doing well, and when you are headed down the wrong path altogether. I spend a good amount of my time writing out what I wanted, because it helps me stay focused on the goal everyday. I look at it and I know how I am going to spend my time that day.
I want to encourage you to step out with confidence and really give it your all. Do not let anybody stand in your way. A ‘victim’ mentality will typically keep great people from coming into your life. Only you can decide to stop being a victim and start living today!
Be open to possibilities for yourself. Select one area of your life where you are unsatisfied, and choose something new, something more for yourself. Do different things and do things differently. Risk more.
The following is a guideline that can help you achieve your goals:
State your goal as a positive statement (“do”, instead of “don’t”). Example : “I will earn $150,000 a year” instead of “I won’t make less money than I deserve.”
Be precise about your goal (State dates, and a measurable amount of achievement so that you can know when you have achieved your goal).
Set priorities (So that when you have several goals, you won’t feel overwhelmed, you’ll know which ones are the most important).
Write your goals down (This solidifies them and makes them feel more important).
Keep your operational goals small (Having many smaller goals is better than one large goal, since it’s easier to see your progress and stay motivated).
Instead of setting an outcome, set a performance goal (This way, there is a control factor to your achievement. Nothing is more dispiriting than failing due to reasons beyond your control, such as bad business environments, or just plain bad luck).
Be realistic about your goals (Set goals that you can achieve, and don’t be influenced by others, who try to set goals beyond your abilities. You can always set another goal if you discover that your first goal was not reaching high enough).
Don’t set your goals too low (Otherwise, you will slow down your progress, become lazy, and simply won’t achieve your maximum potential).
When you do achieve one of your goals, make certain that you have taken the time to enjoy the satisfaction of having accomplished your desire, by allowing yourself a well-deserved break or reward. (It can be as small as an afternoon off to go see that movie you have wanted to see).
It is also important to make certain to absorb the implications of the achievement of your goal, and have a look back at the progress you have made. You should also look at the progress that you have made towards other goals. If the goal was especially noteworthy, make sure that you reward yourself appropriately.
Tara Brooke was a former fashion and swimwear model and the author of the book “Beautiful Ambition: My Secrets to Love, Happiness & Success“.
This is an article contributed to Young Upstarts and published or republished here with permission. All rights of this work belong to the authors named in the article above.