Goal Setting: How to Make Your Goals Happen

9 May 2020

Well-Being

Goals can bring to life our biggest dreams. They can enable us to live joyful, healthy, prosperous, and purposeful lives. But only if we achieve them! Research has shown that 80% of people do not even think of goal setting at all! Of those who do think of goals, 16% don't write them down. The remaining 4% of goal-setters who write down their goals are among the most successful people in society. Let's dive in and see how you can become part of the elite 4% and make your dreams come true, no matter what they may be.

1: How to Set Goals

The first thing to decide is exactly what you want to achieve. It is tempting to choose too many things when beginning with this process, but it is more effective to pick one or two areas of your life to focus on first. The danger of trying to do too much all at once is that it can become overwhelming, making you want to give up before achieving your goals.

Choose one or a maximum of two areas of your life that you wish to work on. Then, refine them so that you have something specific. For example, I might want to work on health. But to get more specific, I need to decide what it is about my health that I want to improve. Let's say I want to increase my fitness by completing a 30 Day Fitness Challenge. That is a great starting place. Next, to super-charge my goal setting, I need to get SMART with my goal.

2: Be SMART

To ensure that your goal will work, you can run it by the SMART framework:

  • Specific - What is it EXACTLY that you want to achieve?
  • Measurable - How will you measure your success?
  • Achievable - Is it definitely possible?
  • Results-based - How will you know when you have achieved it?
  • Timed - When will you have achieved this goal?

Let's fill this in using my goal of developing a daily meditation practice:

  • Specific - I want to increase fitness by completing a 30DayFitness Challenge
  • Measurable - I will track my daily progress using the app, and I will test my working and resting heart rate before, halfway through, and at the end of the challenge to see if my cardiovascular fitness has improved.
  • Achievable - Yes, I have scheduled my workouts into my diary, and I know I can achieve it
  • Results-based - I will also have completed all 30 daily workouts, and I will have improved my cardiovascular fitness
  • Timed - I will complete this goal 30 days from today

3: Review Regularly

To aid motivation and keep you on track, you must review your goal regularly. This is even more crucial when you are working with longer-term goals rather than shorter ones like my 30DayFitness Challenge. Make a point to review your progress weekly so that you can tweak and adjust as necessary to keep you moving toward your goal.

Bonus Tip: Sky Rocket Your Results with Accountability

You are twice as likely to achieve your goals if you tell someone about them. Let a friend or family member know what you are trying to achieve and ask them to check in with you regularly. This accountability will keep you motivated because we don't like to let people down. It will be even more beneficial if you work on a goal together with a friend. Ask around and see if you have anyone in your social circle who wants to work on a similar goal and then smash them together!

Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash

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