The Art of Goal Setting
Our goals can only be reached through a vehicle of a plan, in which we must fervently believe, and upon which we must vigorously act. There is no other route to success. – Pablo Picasso
Do you ever feel like you’re coasting through life not knowing what you want? Or if you do know what you want, but you aren’t sure how to get it. Have you thought about where you’d like to be in 5 years time? Do you have clear objectives for work or school? Do you know what you’d like to have done by the end of the day?
This is where goal setting comes in. Goals are the first step for future success. You can’t simply wish your goals into existence. Goal setting is a process that starts with careful consideration, helps you focus on what you want to achieve, and requires hard work to accomplish.
You want to make sure that the goals you set are things that are a high priority for you. Your goals should be something that motivates you because it will take commitment and focus to achieve your goals.
One way to help stay focused on your goals is to turn them into SMART goals. SMART stands for:
- SPECIFIC: The WHAT and/or WHERE: Your goal should be specific. Generalized goals aren’t helpful as they don’t provide enough direction. Make it as easy as you can to get where you want to go by defining exactly what you want. Having clear and concise goals gives you a clear understanding of the task(s) at hand and a much greater chance of accomplishing them. To help make your goal specific, try asking the what and/or where question: What= What exactly do I want to accomplish? Where= If there’s a fixed location, where will it happen?
- MEASURABLE: The HOW: Having a measurable goal can help ensure that it is successful. If the goal is too vague it will be harder to recognize achievements. Setting measurable milestones can help with reassessing progress along the way. Breaking goals into smaller chunks or steps helps with focus, especially with Long-Term goals. To help with measurable, try asking yourself: How= How will I know I accomplished this goal? How do I get there?
- ATTAINABLE: The CAN: Make sure your goals are within the realm of possibility. That doesn’t mean your goals shouldn’t be challenging, however, accomplishing a goal you didn’t have to work for can be anticlimactic, to say the least. You’ll want a balance; it should be achievable while still “raising the bar.” Ask yourself: Can= With the amount of hard work and dedication I have to put toward this goal, can I reach it?
- RELEVANT: The WHY: Goals should be applicable and important to you. Setting goals aligned with personal aspirations and business objectives will help you develop the focus necessary to fully realize them. Why= Why do I want to achieve this?
- TIME BOUND: The WHEN: Your goal will need a deadline, to not only give you a motivating sense of urgency but also so you know when to celebrate success. Goals are more likely to be achieved when deadlines are in place. You’ll want to allocate realistic and challenging deadlines to ensure there is no overwhelming stress or burn out and to get the maximum personal satisfaction out of it. When= When should it be done by?
- Whenever I am setting goals, I always use the SMART system, along with writing them out and creating a plan of action. When you write something out it makes it real and tangible. I hope this helps you achieve all your goals in life!
The ultimate reason for setting goals is to entice you to become the person it takes to achieve them. – Jim Rohn
Do you have any tips on Goal Setting you find helpful? Share them with us in the comments or on social media. Mark sure you use #hrhniMAD and #GoalSetting so we see it!