Goal Setting Basics - 3 Steps Plus 1
Goal setting seems to be one of the most misundertood, and overly complicated areas of self-improvement. And, well, frankly, it shouldn't be.
Once you understand the difference between goals and tasks, you really only need follow the three basic steps outlined below, and then add in the magic ingredient, to be well on your way to achieving the things that you desire.
1. First you need to define the goal in as specific terms as possible.
"I want to be thin" or "I want to be rich" are just too broad and don't allow for measurable, quantifiable outcomes.
Set the goal as a specific outcome.
For our examples that could be as simple as "I will lose 20 pounds" or "I will earn $10,000 a month."
Could be better, but it's a much better start than before.
2. Determine 'why' you want to achieve this goal. While all 3 steps in this process are important, this step is the key that determines whether or not you persist in working towards and attaining your goal.
Your reasons for attaining the goal need to be very clear as well. They also must be focused on you. You can say, "I want to do this for my family" and that's all well and good, but in the end, the truth is you should be doing this for you and not for someone else.
After all, why do you really want to do those things for your family? Right. So you will feel better about yourself, so they will feel better about you.
So, make "you" the biggest part of the "why" and you'll see an immediate increase in the desire to attain your specific goals.
3. Make your plan.
How will you achieve this goal? If it's a weightloss goal, you may consider a specific diet, or a change in your normal eating habits. You might be thinking of an exercise program, or a combination of both (which will work best, by the way).
Again, be specific. How much exercise? What kinds of exercise? How often? Where? Will you exercise alone?
The more detailed your plan of action is the greater your chances for success.
This includes setting a time limit for achieving your goals as well. "Someday" just isn't going to motivate you and will more often than not lead to that demon procrastination having its way.
Set the plan of action, set a definite time limit, and check your progress as you work towards the goal. You may need to re-evaluate your plan, ie add more exercise time, tighten up your diet plans, or increase the number of times or length of time you are exercising in order to stay on track.
So the three steps:
1. Define the goal
2. Determine the 'why'
3. Set the plan
And that's it.
The last part, that magic part, that missing piece I mentioned before?
You must act on your plan. You must follow through on reviewing the process and progress and then re-evaluate if necessary, making changes that will further you along on the path to your desired outcome.
Action. Massive action is nice, but most of us just don't have it in us, or we lose steam too quickly to stay after it.
Action, consistent and constant, will be the magic that brings you the results you desire.
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