At the beginning of every year you hear and see tons of information about setting your goals. When you start a business or a new project you are advised to set your goals. It’s often suggested that you should set life goals for 5 years and 10 years.
So how come so few people actually achieve or make progress toward their goals? Should we be setting goals – are they beneficial? What stops us from achieving?
Let’s think about the benefits of goal setting. And yes there are very good reasons why you hear and see so much about goals.
Goals provide direction; they provide a framework for you to achieve success in life, career and business. They provide an opportunity for you to really think about where you are now, where you want to be and what you have to do to achieve. They allow you to measure your success and see where you need to add extra effort and they help to motivate you to stretch and move outside your comfort zone.
A 2015 study by psychologist Gail Matthews (written Goal Study Dominican University) showed that those who wrote their goals down, formed a plan of action (commitment) and asked supportive friends to hold them accountable achieved significantly higher success than those who had unwritten goals and had merely thought about their goals.
So let’s look at what I feel are the essential components to achieving success with your goals:
Commitment and Belief: You need to believe in the goals you are making – really believe and take ownership. They need to match your values, if they don’t you won’t be able to believe or commit. Part of commitment is taking that dream, that thought and writing down your goal. Don’t let any mindset or limiting beliefs stop you from achieving your goal.
Planning: Once you are committed and have written down your goals – the next step is to put a practical plan into place to achieve them. This means putting actual dates and timelines against each goal. What resources do you need to achieve your goals? Plan how you are going to achieve those resources and put that into your timeline. Add in review dates to check that your goal is still viable and see if you need to change any of the parameters. Things change and goals set now may not be appropriate, relevant or valid down the track.
Vision: What you can visualise you can create. This is where vision boards can play an important part in achieving your goals. Think about what it will look, feel like when you have achieved your goals. Add images to support your vision and represent your success. Your vision board can be on cardboard, pin board, white board, on your computer. It can be images, quotes, affirmations, dates, mind mapping and diagrams. Whatever works for you and represents what you visualise and feel when you have achieved your goals. Put it somewhere you can see each day.
Accountability: Take that added step and find a goal buddy or join a group that will keep you accountable. Accountability keeps you on track, stops you procrastinating and provides feedback and support.
Achieving goals becomes a good habit, so the more you follow the process, the higher the chances you will succeed.
What goals are you committing to? Have you set up an accountability buddy or joined an accountability group?
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