5 TIPS on goal setting
Living a life without goals is like taking a journey without a map, satnav or even a destination in mind: you'll end up in a different place from where you started, but you'll never really know if it's the best place for you… and you'll have missed out on a lot of fun stuff along the way. Goals give us something to aim for and focus on.
Here's the thing though - finally reaching your goal is easier than taking the first step, no matter how long the journey or how simple it seems at the beginning. Let me give you an example - climbing a mountain. The final few steps to reach the summit are tiresome. Your feet are blistered, the bag on your back is heavy, and the dehydration seems imminent despite you having enough water for a day. But even with all of that, the first step is more difficult. It's incredibly tough to motivate yourself to get up and go. So here's a few things you should consider when setting your next goal.
1. Create a plan
It really doesn't matter what your goal might be - big or small, life-changing or just for fun - you won't get anywhere near it until you set aside some time to figure out the steps you need to take in order to reach the finish line. Whether it's 3 steps, 20 steps or 1,000 steps, you should get a list and a timeline and shoot for glory!
2. Find Accountability
Something that I've discovered that is most effective is having someone question you when you drop the ball. A great example of this - a personal trainer. Having recently hired one, we have set fitness goals for me, and if I'm not busting a gut to reach them, I have this intimidating character telling me to get on with it. The negative aspect doesn't work for everyone, but even if it is a close friend or family member asking how you're getting on with the project, you'll tell yourself to pick it up if you feel you haven't done enough.
3. One Thing At A Time
You've created your plan with several items on the list to complete in order to reach the final goal - great! Well done. Please do not make the mistake of trying to get them all done at once. It just doesn't work. Instead, pick an easy starter and get it done. Yay for mini goals! Once you've discovered the feeling of accomplishment, your momentum will pick up and you'll try another one on the list, and the another.
Success doesn't come easy. No-one ever accomplished anything by being lazy or being spread too thin. Goals simply cannot be achieved without giving up something in return. In reality, the most common currency to pay with is your time. Give up that extra hour of television each night and focus on achieving a mini goal - you'll quickly see the results.
5. Take Action
As mentioned, taking the first step is the hardest. You can see where you want to be in life, and you know once you reach your goal, you'll feel fulfilled - so what are you waiting for? We often hear the expression "I'll start Monday", or "my New Year's resolution is..." - how about we forget this complete nonsense and just get started now. New Year Resolutions are a sham anyway. Can you really think of anyone that has stuck to theirs passed February? Get on with it.