[6 goal setting tips] Be clear & specific– get more results
Happy New Year to all – any goal setting going on out there?
With well wishes and resolutions in the air, I’ve been thinking about my own ambitions for 2017 both personally and professionally. Being a coach for over a decade now, something I try my best to do is “walk the talk ”. In other words – practice what I preach. As most of us know this is sometimes much easier said than done. And I’m not sure I know anyone who does it 100% of the time. Often we know what we need to do even though we may not be acting accordingly. That’s where having an accountability partner, mentor and/or coach is such a powerful source of support.
Working hard to “walk my talk” is something I practice with dedication because I genuinely believe in it. But once again it’s not always that simple. For instance; Do I eat kale? Yes I do. Do I exercise regularly? Absolutely. Make sure to get a good night’s sleep. Without a doubt. Set goals routinely? Hmm…well – not always. This is one of my “easier said than done”.
The irony is I consider myself somewhat of an expert in this area. After all, I’ve been effectively coaching others to set goals for themselves for over 10 years as a coach and as an educator since college. I whole heartedly believe in the power behind the process of goal setting and have seen the effective results it brings again and again. Yet I haven’t always been the best at setting my own. Over the past few years it’s something I’ve had to consciously create a habit around and what a difference it’s made.
Adamant goal setting continues to be a work in progress for me. I think my own challenges in this area have to do with a lacked diligence around follow through and tracking my goals. Don’t get me wrong, I do get a lot accomplished because I’ve always set regular intentions and hold myself to a high standard of self growth and achievement. But my natural method of achieving my goals is in a more “loose way” of let’s say “keeping them in my mind”.
For instance, it’s similar to when I make a grocery list but then never refer to it when I go to the store. Fortunately, I typically remember it all. But due to this I rarely go back and reference the list I have made. Historically I’ve found a similar situation with setting goals which causes me to then lack or often not sustain, an organized system for them. I’ve clearly learned that even with a keen ability to “keep track” in my mind, it’s not nearly as effective as a true goal setting system to keep you on course.
Many people go about their everyday personal and work lives simply “winging it”. With our current world consisting of instant gratification at our fingertips and information highway overloads, time can start feeling like we are on a constant fast track. Impulse and distraction are at an all time high causing it to be easier than ever to lose focus and track of our priorities and what we are ultimately trying to accomplish. All the more reason to hone those goals setting skills. This can take practice, awareness and effort but the benefits are sure worth it!
There are many degrees and approaches for goal setting. Here some basic tips to help you on your way towards effective goal setting.
1. Take time and reflect
Set aside some time to create really well thought out goals. Ponder what you want, why it’s important to you and what the end result is you are hoping to achieve. What is the purpose of your goal? Clarity is key, as is do-able not overly complicated goals.
2. Visualize the outcome
Imagine what it would look like when your goals are accomplished. How would you feel? Creating a vision board or keeping visual reminders such as photos on your desk, in your wallet or in your line of vision. These are great tools to help keep your goals in the forefront of your mind and move closer to that end result becoming a reality.
3. Write it down
Writing your goals down is a highly proven component to achieving them. This allows you to go back to review and reference your goals other than just thinking about them. Seeing your goals written out also helps with prioritizing them and clarity.
Another extremely important factor in effective goal setting is creating productive time management around your goals. Think about projected timelines around how much time your projects require and deadlines for your end result. How will you best organize this time to your advantage?
5. Self care
It may come as a surprise to see this on a list for effective goal setting. But if you want to successfully nail your goals – you need to have your act together! Not only is it crucial to evaluate the scheduled time put in but also what kind of self care that it’s going to take.
Think about what it is you need to do so you can best show up for your self and your goals. What does it take for you to best perform? Consider factors such as; how much rest you require to function most efficiently, nourishing yourself with high energy food that is good for your brain, making sure you have a healthy work/life balance.
6. Get support
As mentioned earlier having someone to check in with about your progress when setting goals can be tremendously effective. This can come in many forms whether you share your intentions with a friend or a mentor, etc… and it can make a world of difference simply knowing someone is there to support you on your mission!
I hope you found these tips helpful!
Wishing you all the best of health, happiness, success and prosperity in 2017.
Now go ahead – set those goals and remember to celebrate even the small steps and achievements along the way.