Before anything happens, a plan must be created. Running out the door and going, going, going won’t really help you if you don’t know where you are going in the first place. Of the people who do have goals, many are frustrated and ready to give up because they haven’t planned their goals correctly. When you set your goals using the right systems, you are already well on your way to reaching them.
The flip side of making your goals challenging is to make them achievable. If you are currently writing five pages a night for your novel, don’t increase the amount to fifty pages. That simply isn’t reasonable and will only serve to frustrate you. You have to look at the situation honestly and plan accordingly. With an increased amount of effort, could you achieve your goal? If not, lower the mark.
Write Down W.I.F.M.
What’s in it for me? If you cannot clearly and easily state why you have a goal, you will not reach it. You have to desire your goals in or-der for motivation to take place. There is no magic here. If you do not truly desire something, setting a goal to get it won’t result in anything. When you aren’t feeling very motivated to keep going, you can refer to your list of reasons for a reminder and immediate motivation.
Write It Down
Write down your goals. Get out a sheet of paper and a pencil and get to work. When you think about your goals you don’t really make a great deal of progress. Only when you write out a specific goal and plan of action do the wheels in your mind start creating solutions and opportunities.
Use the Computer
Use your computer to plan out your goals. The computer offers many benefits. You can type in the information and edit it with relative quickness. You can also quickly save and retrieve your files.
Print Your List
If you have made a list of goals on your computer, printing out the list will make it accessible at all times. You can even make multiple copies to carry with you throughout the day. Place all of your goal sheets in one binder to keep them organized and readily available.
Think Out Loud
When goals are on the brain, as they should be constantly, think aloud. See how they sound when you say them to yourself. This will help you define your goals more precisely and become excited about the future.
To make your goals manageable, think about how they are put together. What are the different areas that need to be completed before the entire goal is finished? For example, if you want to go back to school you have to consider getting admission information, gathering together the funds for tuition, and deciding what path to take.
If you are dealing with a goal whose structure is time-based, break down each segment into a given time period. For example, if your goal is to start a small business within two years, break the steps up groups of months. This will allow you to enjoy constant short-term successes while coming closer and closer to your ultimate goal.
A goal that consists of several steps needs to be treated much differently from other goals. Each step needs to be given its own plan and deadline. If your goal is step-oriented, make sure to treat each section as a goal in itself.
Give every goal a deadline. Without a deadline, you can put it off forever. This is the killer of thousands of well-intentioned objectives. Each goal must have it’s own timeline. This will serve as constant motivation because each day that goes by brings you closer and closer to your deadline. Give each goal a date or time when you will finish. Remember to make it both challenging and achievable.