Goal setting is a key step toward taking command of your life and being intentional about your success. How do you set goals for your personal life? What are some strategies you can use for setting goals and achieving them?
Goal setting is a key step toward taking command of your life and being intentional about your success. It is common that people set goals when the new year starts. A rather more powerful way to look at that is every time you set goals for yourself, it is a new year and a new beginning.
Goal setting is a deeply individual experience. Different methods could suit different people better. The next several minutes provide you with an opportunity to customize your goal-setting algorithm by making use of 20 strategies for setting goals and accomplishing them.
BEFORE SETTING YOUR GOALS
1) Have a rest
Approach the process of goal setting with a clear mind. Before you set your goals, ensure that you’re in an optimal state. Have a good night sleep, meditate, or find solitude in nature. Shut off the noise and technology around you. Do your rituals for feeling fresh and being in harmony with yourself.
2) Allocate the necessary resources
Get a notebook and a pen. Physically writing your goals on paper engages the body and the mind and activates all your mental powers. Dedicate enough time for the goal-setting activity and understand how important of a task this is. It’s designing your own life. Invest at least a couple of hours for it and a block of time each day throughout an entire week to really connect with your goals.
3) Express gratitude
Look around and write down the things you’re grateful for, no matter how little or big they are. What is it that you’re truly thankful for? What do you appreciate about yourself, the people around you, or the environment you’re in? This gets you in a position to acknowledge what you already have in life.
4) Recognize what turned out well
You have come this far and had some accomplishments in your life. Again, write those down. The way you got that job, took that difficult exam, got the money you need, met that friend of yours or the love of your life. What are the moments when you’ve felt fortunate? Recalling the times when life has got your back will give you more confidence for the future.
5) Make a list of what you want
If you could have every wish of yours fulfilled, what would you want? What do you want to experience in life? At this point, use only your creative faculty, not your reasoning. Do not limit your imagination and merely jot down what you want.
6) Consider the different areas of your life
On a scale of 1 to 10, how well are you doing in each of these categories?
Health & Wellness
Love & Romance
Business & Career
Relationships & Communication
Community & Contribution
Wealth & Prosperity
Location & Physical Environment
Fun & Leisure
Creativity & Art
Appearance & Style
Habits & Behaviors
What should happen for the score to be an 8, a 9, or a 10? The different areas are interconnected and impact your overall performance. While neglecting certain categories could make sense in the short term, a balanced living long term requires putting energy in each area.
WHEN SETTING YOUR GOALS
7) Own your goals
When formulating your goals, think, write, and speak in the first person. Using the pronouns I and my is a proven way to signal your subconscious mind that there is something significant going on that concerns you. Also, do a little check-in: are the goals you’re setting truly yours, or are you chasing after somebody else’s dreams?
8) Create actionable statements
When writing your goals, use verbs which indicate taking a positive action. For example, you can say: I practice, I learn, I travel. It is preferable for the verb to be in present tense as if the goal is already a reality. The brain is programmed to do whatever it takes to match your inner world with its outer manifestation.
9) Focus on what you give
Oftentimes people fall short in goal setting because they think solely about what they want to get. The truth is we have far more control over what we give. When you set Give goals instead of Get goals, you’re in charge and have more power to influence the circumstances. An example of a Give goal is, “I launch one new product each quarter,” or, “I exercise four times a week.”
10) Set bigger goals
You can go as far as your wildest dreams but probably not farther than that. A lot of people set their goals either too small or too big. Overall, those who set bigger goals tend to accomplish more even if they miss their target. The goals you set should be out of your reach but within your sight. Set goals that are better than your best but still believable.
11) Have a compelling reason
Is your goal a good to have, a should, or is it a must? Life could be full of distractions, and having a strong Why could make the difference between reaching your targets and not. Ask yourself what is the cost of not taking action and maintaining the status quo? Be aware of what you settle for.
12) Attach feelings to your goals
Imagine what will you feel when this dream of yours comes true? Feel the feeling of already having achieved the goal. Is it freedom, joy, love, appreciation, empowerment or others? Nurture the emotions you’re willing to have when you accomplish your goals, and this will bring you closer to them.
13) Set milestones
For every goal, have three milestones so that when you hit them, you know you’re going in the desired direction. This will also put in perspective whether you have the right metrics to measure your success. A big goal becomes easily achievable when you slice it, and you devote to the process step by step.
14) Arrange your goals in order
Identify your primary goal, then the top three goals which you’ll give most of your attention to. For some goals, you may want to put a specific timeline by when you will accomplish them. This adds a sense of excitement and could inspire you to take action sooner. On the other hand, if putting a date to your goal makes you feel anxious and pressured, skip that for now and allow for your dream to ripen a little more before you actively step into it.
15) Come up with a common theme
Think about if there is a word or a phrase which encompasses your goals and represents what you’re aiming to achieve. For instance, you could say, “The theme for me this year is: self-love; financial freedom; being a better parent.” Choose an expression which corresponds to your higher purpose and mission, something that would matter a decade from now.
AFTER THE GOAL SETTING
16) Review your goals
Take a look at your goals on a weekly basis and rate your progress. Where needed, reword and polish your goal statements until they feel right. Keep being engaged with and focused on your goals. As you move forward, be ready to adjust your approach to the targets until you meet them.
17) Create a vision board
Put the pieces together in a visual representation of your goals. The traditional way of doing that is by cutting and pasting images from magazines. Today, you could create a photo collage online and then have it as a wallpaper on your desktop or mobile. Practice visualization of your goals. Hold in your mind the picture of accomplishing your goals and grab the opportunities to do so when they occur.
18) Reverse-engineer the path
Think backward from your goal. What are the steps before it? Next, brainstorm about how you can get there. For each goal, come up with at least 10 ideas. The first few of them could be the most obvious but not necessarily the most effective. Be resourceful and explore the matter in more depth and detail.
19) Leverage other people’s experience
Consult with people who have already been where you want to go. Those could be business mentors, wellness coaches, family members, peers, managers, etc. Be open to constructive feedback and use it as an extra motivator. Share your goals with people who will encourage you and hold you accountable.
20) Commit to doing your best
Perceive your goals as projects you’re working on and be invested in making consistent progress. When there’s work well done, reward yourself. Treat your goals as you would treat the promises you give because a goal is a promise to yourself, and as such you keep it.
Growth is natural, but it’s not automatic. Your brain needs a target, and if you do not provide it with one, it will find just any. Set your goals wisely and strategically. Then accomplish them for your betterment and the betterment of the world.