As I traveled to Germany recently to spend some quality time with my family and good old friends, I also found myself contemplating all sorts of things from goals, to who I really am or rather want to be and how I want to spend the rest of my life. Surely must be the getting older thing or simply just the fact that my husband I are expecting our first child – coming January 2016! Yay!
I’m sure each and everyone of us, faced with a crossroad such as this, will start thinking about who they really are and who they want to be and how to make the world a better place not only for ourselves any longer but also for the little ones that we are bringing into this world. I can’t even really begin to describe all of the things that are going through my mind at this point but what I do know is that I am a planner by heart and with all that, first thing that comes to mind is goal setting and this is why I want to share with you my “Three Golden Rules To Goal Setting” today.
Goal setting and how to make the most of it – Why? Because every time when I am faced with something big and unknown that’s what I do. It makes me not only feel more comfortable but also gives me a starting point on how to tackle the issue or idea and provides me with a bigger picture view. It simply puts things back in perspective for me as priorities may change but dreams and goals usually don’t.
Almost always, I start by asking friends, family, fellow entrepreneurs etc. (little hint: Be selective! – I know everyone means well but everyone has alternate motives and not everyone understands YOUR bigger picture especially when it comes to business decisions and personal ones as well for that matter.) Asking advise or simply having someone that listens gives me a chance to really think things through and also helps me to come up with strategies in order to reach my goal. I don’t know about you but to me goal setting is making the big unknown or an unthinkable big goal much more manageable and not so big, scary and unreachable.
From there I start doing my research, I find experts and books to read and decide on the next steps. I make it a point and carve out time out of my busy schedule to think about: How does all this fit into my life? What changes do I need to make? And, how soon do I want to accomplish said goal. I then set myself up with a timeline and break things down into easy steps to accomplish in order to reach my goal. I know many people that do this only once at the end of every year – personally however, I prefer doing this more based on what’s happening in my life instead of a set time – I need this in order to move forward and also keep my big picture full, front and center this ensures that nothing is left behind : ) To me planning is half the fun and I want this to be an enjoyable process and being able to look forward to it but I’m afraid that if I simply add goal setting to my calendar as a Must Do at the end of the year will take the fun out of it.
But I also strongly believe in doing what works best for you, just because something works for me doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the only way. Find what works best for you and roll with it – I know all too many of my fellow small business owners and friends that are much more structured and do this every six month or at the very least once at the end of the year and they accomplish wonderful things. However, what we do ALL Agree on is that in order to move forward and to reach any goal we must have certain steps in place and know what our big picture and our goals are in the first place!
So today, in order to set yourself up for success, let me challenge you to take some time to your very own “Goal Setting” my Three Golden Rules To Goal Setting will give you a simple road map To make this process EASY AND ENJOYABLE and don’t forget to share your goals with us below in the comment section and how you are planning to accomplish them. We all love a good success story! So let’s get to it.
A Clear Picture of Desired Result – If you don’t know what you want – then how will you know when you get there? Certainly putting out fires day by day may help you get through the day but clearly not help you stay on track achieving any of your life’s dreams or goals. So the first thing I want you to do is get a clear picture of who and where you are and what it is you are trying to accomplish. Ask yourself if you are happy with how far you’ve come? Are you happy with your career choice? Have you made it as far as you could? Are you aspiring to step up the career ladder? Or, are you just as happy where you are? Are you making as much as you thought? And so on . . .
Maybe all you want from life is a little time to yourself or be able to have the time to take up a new hobby? Travel more or pick up a good book and read? Finally start that business you have been dreaming about or just a little bit more romance in your relationship. Put yourself in the right mood, maybe some coffee, tea or wine and give yourself permission to just let your mind go and come up with at least one goal or dream that you would like to achieve over the span of the next year. In order to reach any goal it is imperative to know where you are going, only then, can you break your goal down into manageable steps and start your endeavor into the right direction.
Positive Thinking – Is A Must When You Are Setting Any Goal. Just as with anything else in life it’s all about attitude. If you tell yourself from day one that your dreams and goals are impossible to reach well then they more than likely are. I am not saying that it will be easy and of course there will be ups and downs. But what’s important is that you get back on your feet, think back why it is important to you and remind yourself of the goal, imagine just how great you will feel when you finally get there. Trust me nothing feels as great as achieving a goal that you worked so hard for. Sometimes all it needs is a little tweak, maybe your steps to reach your goals aren’t small / simple enough? Or you simply haven’t allowed enough time to reach your goal, give it a once over and get back to it! Which brings me to Step 3.
SMART Goal Setting – Many times I find the issue starts at simply how a goal is set. Our dreams and or goals many times aren’t too big, after all dreams are meant to be big that’s why they are dreams : ) and they aren’t easy to come by. Be sure to give yourself enough time to achieve your dreams and goals by simply following the SMART way of goal setting.
S pecific – Be as specific as possible! When you set a goal – just saying I want to start my own business isn’t enough – rather break things down such as by the end of next month I want to have done all my research in order to start my own business. Clearly define your goal and the individual steps. Break your goal down into small manageable steps, giving you specific action tasks to keep you on track.
M easurable -In order to make your goal measurable the goal must be precise. Let’s say your goal is to save money for one year so you can take a trip you have been dreaming of. If the trip is $3,000 then you must put at least $250 aside each month. Knowing exactly how much to put away each month will show that you are on the right track and will make you feel good at the end of each month knowing each time you are one step closer to the trip of your dreams.
A ttainable – The issue usually never is, that our dreams are too big but rather that we simply don’t allow enough time to reach said dreams. Be sure to set goals that are realistic, if they are too large then you are setting yourself up for failure from day one. Rather adjust your expectations, they should be manageable and attainable but not too easy.
R elevant – Be sure you are setting a goal that is your goal! Your goal should be something that is close to your heart, nothing is as powerful and driving than a goal that is meaningful to your heart.
T imebound – There should always be an end time to any goal. For example once a week, every month, within six month or by the end of next year. There is a reason why we set deadlines . . . they can be very powerful!
So that is your challenge! I know what my goals are and what I must do in order to reach my goals to be ready for when little Baby McCoy makes it’s entry into this world and hopefully so will you with my three golden rules . . .
“If you are failing to plan, You are planning to fail” ~Benjamin Franklin.
Your turn! Do you think it’s hard to set goals? And even harder to accomplish them? Join the discussion and share with us in the comment section below what your goals are or if you have any great tips on goal setting. What things have you found helped you?
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