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Goal Setting Bonuses!

Setting goals effectively can significantly enhance your personal and professional development. They can make your dreams come true and guide your life in another direction. But we all know it’s not always as easy as it sounds.

You’ve no doubt heard of SMART goals – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound. They are the standard used by many to ensure that a clear outline and path is established, and they are easily recognized. Here is a fresh review if you haven’t seen them in a while:

  1. Be Specific:

  • Clearly define what you want to achieve. Specific goals provide a clear direction and make it easier to create an actionable plan.

  • Example: Instead of saying "I want to get fit," say "I want to run a 5K race in under 30 minutes within the next 3 months."

  1. Make Your Goals Measurable:

  • Ensure your goals have criteria for measuring progress. This helps you stay on track and recognize when you’ve reached your goal.

  • Example: "I will save $5,000 for a vacation by the end of the year by saving $400 each month."

  1. Set Achievable Goals:

  • Your goals should be realistic and attainable. Setting overly ambitious goals can be discouraging if they are not achieved.

  • Example: If you currently run twice a week, a goal to run five times a week may be more achievable than running every day.

  • Divide larger goals into smaller, manageable tasks. This makes the overall goal less overwhelming and helps maintain motivation.

  • Example: If your goal is to launch a business, break it down into steps like market research, business plan creation, securing funding, etc.

  1. Ensure Relevance:

  • Your goals should align with your broader objectives, values, and long-term aspirations.

  • Example: If your long-term career goal is to become a project manager, a relevant goal might be to complete a project management certification within six months.

  1. Time-Bound Goals:

  • Set a deadline for your goals. This creates a sense of urgency and helps prioritize your tasks.

  • Example: "I will complete my novel by the end of the year by writing 500 words every day."

But that’s just the start, the basics. While they are the standard for goal setting, you can and should get more detailed for achieving your dreams. In my programs, I add a few more steps – 7, to be exact! – and it’s also how I set my own goals.

  1. Visualize Your Goals:

  • Spend time imagining your goal in detail. Visualizing the desired result reinforces your commitment and motivates you to take the necessary steps to achieve it.

  • Example: Picture yourself receiving a diploma if your goal is to graduate from college.

  1. Write Down Your Goals:

  • Put your goals in writing to solidify your commitment and serve as a constant reminder of what you’re working towards.

  • Example: Maintain a goal journal or vision board where you list and regularly review your goals. Post them where you see them multiple times a day.

  1. Create an Action Plan:

  • Develop a step-by-step plan that outlines how you will achieve your goal. This plan should include actionable tasks and milestones.

  • Example: If your goal is to learn a new language, your action plan might include daily practice, enrolling in a course, and regular conversation practice with native speakers.

  1. Set Priorities:

  • Determine which goals are most important to you and focus on those first. Prioritizing helps you allocate your time and resources effectively.

  • Example: If you have multiple career goals, decide which one will have the most significant impact and concentrate on that first.

  1. Seek Accountability:

  • Share your goals with a friend, mentor, or coach who can provide support and hold you accountable. Regular check-ins keep you on track.

  • Example: If you want to lose weight, find a workout buddy or hire a personal trainer to help you stay motivated and accountable.

  1. Reward Yourself:

  • Plan rewards for when you achieve milestones or complete your goal. Celebrate your progress to stay motivated and reinforce positive behavior.

  • Example: Treat yourself to a small reward, like a special meal, small gift, massage, or a day off, whenever you reach a significant milestone in your goal journey.

  1. Reflect and Adjust:

  • Regularly reflect on your progress and make necessary adjustments to your goals or plans. This ongoing process helps you stay aligned with your objectives, adapt to any changes, and face obstacles directly.

  • Example: Schedule monthly or quarterly reviews to assess your progress, reflect on what’s working or not, and make any needed changes to your approach.

The most important thing to do is MAKE THE DECISION to pursue your goal(s). You are worth it. Your goals are yours alone to make and should not be based on the wants or needs of others. Again, this is about YOU.

And by incorporating these strategies, you can set and achieve goals in a way that keeps you motivated, focused, adaptable to changes – and READY TO CELEBRATE YOUR SUCCESSES!


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