Do you have amazing ideas and when it comes to executing them you fall apart? Does looking at your to-do list and all you need to accomplish leave you feeling overwhelmed? Are you looking at the same dreams every year and failing to make them happen? Do you want to learn how to set goals and achieve them so you can share your talents?
In last week’s blog post, I talked about figuring out what our priorities were. That’s the awareness and half the battle. The other half is executing and taking action. We are going to talk about setting goals today.
I have worked with a lot of people and one of the reasons I see people get stuck is they become overwhelmed when they are trying to clear their clutter and get organized. They look at what needs to be accomplished, clearing out the clutter of their home, and become paralyzed because there is so much to do. The key is to break it down into manageable steps.
Look, I recommend this all the time and had to take my own advice. I am writing some books and was overwhelmed. I thought for a moment and said what am I doing? All I need to do is break it down into easy to execute steps and I will have it done. What is really interesting is that when I did this I accomplished a lot more. I set a tiny, manageable goal, for example, write 10 questions for your book. Because I took the pressure off to complete the whole thing, more often than not, I could surpass each step. So I would write 15 questions and finish my book more quickly.
Some things to think about when goal setting:
Get motivated! You want to make sure you are clear in what is important because if you aren’t motivated, there’s a slim chance you will achieve your goals. This isn’t a race. If you need to go back to clarify your priorities, do that. The podcast will be here. Being clear in your priorities will support you to remain motivated.
High priority. Having a sense of urgency is also good. This allows you to push through to accomplish on those days when you aren’t feeling it!
Put it in writing! The physical act of writing a goal makes it real. Don’t try to remember all you need to do! Our minds aren’t made for remembering they are meant to be creative and solve problems.
Have a to-do list to work from that is broken down into manageable steps. Writing out the individual steps, and then crossing each one off as you complete it, you’ll realize that you are making progress towards your ultimate goal. This is especially important if your goal is big and demanding, or long-term.
What are your priorities right now? What goals do you want to set for 2022? What do you need to do to make it happen?
SMART is an acronym that you can use to guide your goal setting. To make sure your goals are clear and reachable, each one should be:
- Specific (simple, sensible, significant).
- What do I want to accomplish?
- Why is this goal important?
- What resources or limits are involved?
A specific goal could be, “I choose to gain the skills and experience necessary to own my own business.”
Measurable (meaningful, motivating).
A measurable goal should address questions such as:
- How much?
- How many?
- How will I know when it is accomplished?
I choose to take the necessary classes and training the experience I need within two years.
Achievable (agreed, attainable).
Your goal also needs to be realistic and attainable. Stretch your abilities but still remain doable.
- How can I accomplish this goal?
- How realistic is the goal, based on other constraints, such as available time?
I choose to quit playing basketball so I can spend the time on coursework and cut down on my weekly Starbucks to have money for classes. I will look into grants and loans.
Relevant (reasonable, realistic and resourced, results-based).
Can you answer yes?
- Does this seem worthwhile?
- Is this the right time?
- Is it applicable for my finances?
You might want to start your own business, but is it the right time to undertake the required training? Have you considered your spouse’s goals? For example, if you want to start a family, would you have time to complete classes?
Time-bound (time-based, time-limited, time/cost limited, timely, time-sensitive).
A time-bound goal will usually answer these questions:
- What can I do right now?
- What can I do this week?
- What can I do six months from now?
- What can I do a year from now?
- What can I do right now?
How long will it take you to acquire these skills? Do you need further training, so that you’re eligible for certain exams or qualifications? It’s important to give yourself a realistic time frame for accomplishing the smaller goals that are necessary to achieving your final objective.
Resist the urge to set goals that are too easy. Accomplishing a goal that you didn’t have to work hard for can be disheartening at best, and can also make you fear setting future goals that carry a risk of not happening. By setting realistic yet challenging goals, you hit a balance. Think, “raise the bar” and bring personal satisfaction.
Also, Beware of setting goals that someone else has power over. For example, “Get a raise!” depends on your boss, the financial health of the company, and other factors. But “Get experience and training and do the work that I need to be considered” is entirely up to you.
Keep on keeping on
Goal setting is an ongoing activity not just a means to an end. Build-in reminders to keep yourself on track, and regularly review your progress.
Takeaways from today’s blog:
- Write SMART goals for each of your priorities
- Create a to do list based on your SMART goals
- Place your goals where you can see them every single day
- Check in with yourself and how you are progressing on a regular basis
What SMART goals will you create? What clutter do you need to clear? How will SMART goals support you in clearing clutter?
DIY Options to Clear Clutter
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