Hey there! So it’s Monday. I love mondays, because they signify the start of a new week. Mondays can be an amazing time to start things, like; A new workout plan, a new financial goal, or new ideology to complement your lifestyle. I have set many goals over the past decade, some that I’ve clearly completed, some that I’ve utterly failed, and ones that I’m not even sure about. I’ve read that there is an extremely large percentage of the population, who have never even sat down, and wrote out their goals on paper. Within the last 2 years, I’ve realized that I used to write out my goals in a way that set me up for failure or at least unsatisfactory completion. There are several ways to specifically write out your goals to ensure that you are successful. Here are a few;
1. Set A Specific Date:
Goals are just dreams with timelines right? : ) So give yourself a date to complete your goals by so that there is a sense of urgency to complete them. It also allows you a checkpoint to see if your set goals are actually important to you or not. At that point, you can re-evaluate, revamp and continue setting newer and bigger goals, to create a journey in life that is fun, exciting and continuously self improving!
2. One Goal Per Goal:
One thing I frequently found myself doing when writing out goals, was writing multiple goals in one. So for example;
- My goal is to read 4 books this month and to buy one book too.
This goal is relatively clear about my intentions, but when the goal deadline arrives, and you only read 2 books that month, but bought 5 books…you kind of achieved the goal and kind of didn’t. To make it even more clear for yourself, write one decisive goal per goal. There’s no limit to your goals, so write them separately;
- My goal is to read 4 books this month
- My goal is to buy a new book this month
It feels better to be able to cross 2 goals off the list as successfully completed, instead of just crossing off a goal because it didn’t really work out exactly so.
3. Phrase The Goal To Be Yes Or No:
When you write out your goals, be decisive with one goal per goal, but also, be careful of how you word it. Ensure that all of your goals are written so that when the deadline comes, you can answer it yes or no. Be precise with what you want. If you wrote down, “I want to get healthier” as a goal, can you answer that yes or no when the end date has been reached? Not really. Instead, write something like, “I want to be able to run 10k in 40 minutes by Sept 20th”, or “I want to weigh 180 lbs by Oct 1st”. These are goals that, when the end date arrives, can be answered yes or no. It increases your focus and clarity when you have an actual, tangible or logically imaginable goal. Clarity is huge in everything you do, click here to read a recent post I wrote on the power of clarity. (Ignore the new website info at the bottom of the post…this is the new website )
4. Write In The Positive Tense:
It’s always a good practice in life to stay positive, about everything you do. I’m not suggesting that negative events don’t happen, but you can usually find something good and positive to take out of any situation. The same goes for your goals. When you write your goals down, try to write them in the positive tense and use, the terms that you want to see, not what you don’t want to see. For example, a negative tense goal could look like this;
- I want to be debt free in a year…or
- I want to lose 15 lbs in 2 months…or
- I don’t want to read less than 2 books this month
When you include the terms that don’t necessarily encompass the meaning or result of what you truly want, you may not be sending clear signals about what you really want, so try to avoid using them in your goal writing. Instead of using the words; debt, lose or don’t want, just reword them slightly;
- I want to have $10,000 in savings by Jan. 1st 2011
- I want to weigh a healthy 180 lbs by Oct 3rd 2010
- I want to read 2 books by Oct. 1st
These 3 goals mean very similar things when compared to their negative version, but just by stating the positive terms which you actually want more of, you’re putting your focus on these words and meanings. This will actually attract more of those same positive feelings and terms you’re aiming towards, back into your life, which will in turn, assist you in completing your goals.
5. Set Varied Levels To Each Goal:
In order to easily achieve every goal you set, as well as push yourself beyond what you even thought you were capable of, try setting different levels of completion for each goal. I like to set 3 levels which I call, minimum, goal, and extreme. For example:
My goal is increasing my income so I would write;
Minimum – I want to earn $3000 in the month of September 2010 (this should be an easily attainable level for what you are used to achieving, regardless of the amount, the minimum should be relatively easy for you to attain)
Goal – I want to earn $5000 in the month of September 2010 (this should be a bigger challenge, one that you believe you could reach, would be very impressed if you reached it, and believe you can strive towards it)
Extreme – I want to earn $10,000 in the month of September 2010 (this should be a dream level goal, something that if you achieved it, you would be absolutely astonished and blown away by your awesomeness!)
That way, you’re still feeling the gratification of successfully completing a goal, and you’re still challenging yourself to push harder and achieve more than you ever thought possible. This works for any type of goals too, be creative!
6. Share Your Goals With Your Peers:
One way to increase the odds of successfully completing the goals you set, is to tell your friends and family your goals. Hold yourself accountable to these peers, update them on your progress, ask for guidance if you’re struggling, and then celebrate your successes with them once they’re completed! This alone can make a huge difference in goal completion, as for some strange reason, it can be easier to be dishonest with yourself, than with others. Also, if your friend or family is working on a goal, offer yourself to be an accountability partner! I’m sure they’d appreciate the support on their journey of self improvement!
7. Set Rewards
Based on the size of your goals, there should be a relative sized reward waiting for you at the finish line! There is no better way to reinforce positive and timely action in completing your goals, than a nice juicy prize for completion. Now I know its easy to get carried away with this so have some fun, don’t overdo it. Just let yourself relish in the successful completion of a goal you set. For example;
- You reached your goal weight – $100 to buy a new snazzy outfit.
- You earned your financial “extreme” level goal – book a trip for you and your best friend to Las Vegas.
- You completed that huge personal project that you chose to do in your spare time – Go out for a nice dinner at your favourite restaurant, and a go to a movie.
All of these tips can help you to achieve your goals, but the most important process behind your goal setting (besides the necessity of action), from which everything in todays world started from, a dream. Dream big dreams, set big goals! If you want to be someone, have something, go somewhere or do something that you would never think possible for you in this lifetime….even better : ) !! Please let me know what your goals and dreams are. If you need an accountability partner, let me know too! Thanks for letting me share my passion with you! I wish you the best of luck with all your goals, and in your amazing journeys towards them!
p.s. – My newest goal is to eliminate all known sources of un-natural sugars from my diet for 2 weeks to see how I feel. That means no sugar in my coffee, no pop or slurpees, ice cream, chocolate bars, you name it. I have been researching lots into the affects of sugar on our bodies, which I will be sharing with you soon.