It’s nice to dream. I do it all the time, staring out of the train window on my daily commute. Sometimes I look at houses I’d like to live in one day.
Other times, flashes of sunshine take me to some tropical beach. It’s nice to dream. It makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. The thing is, it rarely turns into more than that.
For that to happen you’ll need to learn how to set simple and effective goals that will motivate you to keep going and trying to turn your dreams into reality.
If you want to set goals, use the SMART goal system. This system was originally invented in 1981, but is still very much in use today even by such illustrious institutes as MIT, and it can help you make certain that your goals are both feasible and achievable.
Specific: Make certain that your goals are not pie-in-the sky ideas. Instead, have specific ideas of what you’re trying to do and where you’re trying to get to.
The reason for this is that specific goals give you direction, while vague goals leave you directionless.
Measurable: Similarly, make sure that there is some way to measure your goals so that you know when you’re making progress and when you have to double down.
By making a goal measurable, you further help to make certain that you know when you’ve attained it and can celebrate. And who doesn’t like that?
Attainable: You can say that you want to win the Noble Prize in Economics, but wouldn’t it be better to start by getting a degree in the field first?
After all, it’s not like you can’t set new goals when you accomplish the ones you have! What’s more, if the goals are unachievable, all you’ll end up doing is discouraging yourself, and from there it’s a short route to giving up.
Relevant: Also, make certain that the goals actually lead you in the direction that you want to take. Sure, fame is nice, but does it really help you marry the person of your dreams. So make sure they’re in line with what you want from life.
Time Bound: Give yourself deadlines! If you don’t, there’s a good chance you’ll end up suffering from ‘tomorrow syndrome’ where you say to yourself, “I’ll get to that tomorrow” day after day.
The obvious problem with that is that we all eventually run out of tomorrows, and if that happens, all we’re left with are regrets.
Care about your goals
Be sure that the goals you have are the ones you actually care about. There are plenty of ways that you can end up setting goals that aren’t really that important to you.
Maybe they’re important to people close to you, or perhaps society makes you think they should be your goals.
The thing is, it’s very hard to motivate yourself with ‘should’. Instead, make sure you aim for ‘want’ instead. This way, you’ll make sure when the going gets rough, rather than you getting into an existential crisis about what you really want, you can keep going.
Once you have your big goals worked out, set goalposts or milestones along the way that you will work towards. These will serve as stepping stones to make certain that you stay on target. They will also give you something to focus on and a way to measure how you’re doing.
Write it down and share it
The act of writing down your goals can really help immensely. Firstly, the very act of writing it down will feel like you’re committing to them.
Secondly, by writing them down, you’re far more likely to notice gaping holes in your timeline, logic and overall goal setting, which otherwise might have remained unaddressed. In this way, it will serve to make your goals more achievable and more concrete.
By showing your goals to somebody you trust, you can not only get their feedback, but also motivate yourself. After all, now you’ve not just committed to these goals in your own head, but out loud as well, which means that if you fail, you don’t just have to deal with our own disappointment, but also that of the other person.
This can be an immensely useful motivator.
Goals shouldn’t be written in stone
Though you should strive to achieve your goals—that’s why you’re setting them—don’t be afraid to change or modify them as the situation on the ground or you yourself change.
Instead, it’s fine to constantly be tinkering with your ambitions so that they more in line with who you are.
Don’t use this as an excuse to water down your goals though! Keep aiming high, as being ambitious can be more important than being talented in getting somewhere in life.
Instead, use these opportunities to make your ambitions easier to achieve, by choosing the better paths—like the right education and the right job—and modify your goals to better make use of what you know or what you’re learning.
Don’t give up. There will be times when things are looking down, when the world will seem against you and when life will be hard. This is where life separates the boys and girls from the men and women.
It might not be easy, but if it wasn’t hard, you wouldn’t be proud of yourself for doing it—and that has to count for something.
Set Goals For Happier And Healthier You
Without goals, you lack focus and direction.
So, let’s get excited! A future, healthy, happy you awaits! Let’s take a look at each of these areas and look for ways to balance the scale. Grab a pen and paper, find a quiet space and let’s get ready to set our intentions.
Get rid of the things you don’t need and you will feel as though a huge weight has been lifted. Look around your home and make a list of the places you know could use your attention. Is it your closet? Your kitchen? Your office space? Start with one room at a time and work your way down the list.
How to set simple and effective goals? How do you do it?