Do you have your goal-setting process nailed down?

There’s SO much advice online about this. And there are also SO many people who still think a goal is a New Year’s resolution or an objective. Not forgetting the many who don’t think they should be setting goals at all. Each to his own, I believe we’re all here to co-exist peacefully and do what feels best to us, but this Blog post is about how to set goals and achieve them with strategies for success, so that’s what we will focus on. By the end, you should have a good idea of whether it will work for you or not. Goal setting is not for everyone, and there are varying degrees to which you can keep track of them. Let’s talk about it.

What is a goal?

Basically, a goal is a dream with a deadline. It’s the desired result from a series of outcomes that you commit to achieving. They can be set in any life area – Health & Well-being, Career/Financial, Spiritual, Self-development, and Relationships – whatever area you choose to set a goal in. They usually fall into 3 buckets:

  • short-term goals
  • medium-term goals
  • long-term goals

Benefits of goal-setting

Goals help you to trigger new behaviors for yourself. They usually come about because you want to change something in your way of life. They’re good because they give you a sense of direction, an overall action plan, and if you set it properly, a step-by-step process to achieve the progress you want. They also help you measure your progress and motivate you to do better and become better. This way, you have greater control of your future. You’ve probably been setting goals ever since you were little. Remember when you had those plans of becoming an actress or a princess when you grew up? That was you setting a goal.

How to set goals and achieve them

The process of goal-setting should make you excited. My advice is to do what feels good to you. If you’re not someone who wants to track weekly, don’t put yourself through that. If you’re better off setting high-level goals instead of a step-by-step plan, then do that instead. Don’t make it a chore that you dread. That’s not going to inspire you or motivate you. Here are some tips:

1.Do your goals when you have some time to yourself

Kick back, have a warm drink next to you, and brainstorm your dreams. Select the important ones you want to work on. The ones that make your heart happy.

2. Make them SMART goals

(Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound). You can google the format for this if you don’t already know what it means.

3. Write the goals down in a journal or planner

Did you know it’s been proven that when you write your goals down, your subconscious mind immediately goes to work on making those goals happen? There is no better reason. When I learnt about this, I was sold on writing them down then and there!

4. Break your goals down into milestones and action steps

Be as specific as possible. If you have a daily action step, write it down. (Eg. setting a fitness goal. If your action step is exercise, don’t just set an action step of going to the gym 3 x a week. Your action step should say “I will go to the gym on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings from 7:00 – 7:30 am every week from January to March and do resistance training). You get the idea.

5. Identify any potential obstacles

This one is important. If you set a goal for a new home in 6 months, take into account all potential obstacles that could come up. Planning for potential obstacles takes the surprise away and you will already have a few solutions in mind if they ever pop up. A famous army general once said that planning is half the battle already won. This is what separates high performers and the success they have from everyone else. They plan in the best way possible.

6. Identify all your resources

Many people get stuck here because money is the only resource they can think of. If you take a step back, there are more resources that you’ll need. Maybe your resource is internal and looks like a mindset shift – and an action step is having to work on improving it daily (eg. through a podcast or self-development book). It could look like research – maybe you need to gather information about your goal from the internet or talk to someone (eg. if you’re planning a destination holiday or changing your career field). Those two resource examples aren’t money but they are still important to achieving the goal.

7. Hold yourself accountable

No one else is going to make sure you do those action steps. Your success is dependent on YOU moving the needle forward.

8. Track your progress

This is what trips a lot of people up. You don’t have to keep a progress chart and tick each step off every single week if that doesn’t sound like fun. Do what feels good. Maybe that looks like keeping an eye on progress at a high-level every week and only sitting down once a month to go into detail. There is no wrong way to do it. Your life, your rules. But remember, whatever you’re doing and how you do it should be working for you. If it’s not, maybe you need to change the way you track your goals. If you need to become more disciplined, maybe doing it every week is needed.

9. Reflect and adjust where needed

When you reflect during this process, see what’s working and what isn’t. Be very honest with yourself. Don’t keep an action step if it’s not happening. If you’re not getting to the gym (in my fitness example), then change the action step to a workout at home or a class in studio instead. You have to adjust as you go along if something isn’t happening.

10. Make alignment practices a priority

This wouldn’t be a Blog post of mine, if I didn’t throw energy in somewhere! Make sure you do alignment practices to keep the feeling of your dream or goal fresh and alive. We get what we vibrate, so if it means you visualizing your dream once a day, or saying affirmations in front of the mirror at night – get into alignment with having your goal or dream now. I can’t stress how important this one is. That’s why I left it for last. If you don’t have the money or whatever other resources you need to get to your goal, you ALWAYS have alignment practices. You have the ability to focus your thoughts and feelings, and mold your energy. This is how the Universe will start helping you to make your dreams come true.

“You can start out of nothing, and out of nothing and no way, a way will be made” – Dr. Michael Bernard Beckwith 

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