“As a child, I was challenged to keep goals. In elementary school, I was forced to write out weekly tasks and then turn in a sheet showing each task with little check marks as accomplishments. My third-grade teacher made us do this as a class and was critical with me…not for partial goal-setting, but for over-achieving my goals each week. Not only would I complete each goal, I would write out the extra things I did after that goal. As I look back now, I realize that even as a young child, I was very set on timeliness, goal-setting, and getting chores done’’
~ Dr. Gayle Joplin Hall
How does one set goals that will actually get done? Is there a magical wand to this? As a former Professor, I created a Roadmap to Goal-Setting ™ and shared this with my students. It is four pages long (too long for here), so I’m writing and sharing a short, seven- point-bulleted-check-list and providing it here. Guess what? There is a way to set attainable goals so you can achieve them. Forget most of what you’ve ever been told and put on your seat belt. This is the real deal to achieving your goals.
Rev Up Your Engine and Drive Your Mission With This Mini-Map For Goal Setting. The following are Seven Points That Will Increase Your Success by 100%:
I. Write down your goals. Let me say this again. WRITE! If you just talk about what you’d like to happen, it is highly unlikely that your goals will ever happen. The most successful people are those who write their goals down and then mark them off as they go. Plus, nothing is more exciting than seeing those big check marks next to completed tasks!
II. Have a set time of day that you write down your goals. Either do it first thing in the morning as you look over your schedule, or do it the very last thing at night when you are ready to quit working. If you set a specific time of day for goal writing, this is almost as important as actually writing down the goals themselves. Get in the habit of doing this. The time that works best for me is very late – it is the last thing I do before I go to bed. I leave my goals hand-written out on my tablet, resting in my office chair. You will figure out what is best for you after the first week or so.
III. There are different types of goal-setting. One very important key is to be able to see results. For this to happen, you must set short-term goals in the beginning. Set daily goals. List the small, doable goals first and get them done quickly so you can feel a sense of accomplishment each day. Then move on to your bigger goals on your sheet for the day. Mark them off as you get them completed.
IV. Weekly goals can be added to your list, after you have learned how to write and master daily goals. If something needs carried over from one day to the next or from one week to the next, simply do that on your list. We all have to make adjustments to our schedule.
V. Short-term planning still includes monthly goal setting. If goal-setting is brand new to you or if you have not had success with this before, go slowly and work it day-by-day, week-by-week, and then move on to monthly planning. Do NOT get overwhelmed, feel like you cannot do it, or get freaked out. YOU CAN DO THIS WITH PRACTICE!
VI. You are ready to move on to long-term planning when you can keep a relatively maintained calendar with goals achieved for a period of three+ months. What this means is this…start to plan months ahead for special events, recurring daily chores or tasks, vacations, etc. Long-term planning can be anywhere from six months from now throughout your lifespan. Always remember that adjustments can be made and will have to be made. That is perfectly okay!
VII. See yourself living the life you have planned! This is super important for you to actually think about what you will see first thing in the morning when you open your eyes. What will you taste, smell, and do BEFORE you get started on your goals for the day? Is meditation part of your life plan, or perhaps stretching before breakfast? Visualize yourself in the home you’ve planned, doing what your heart desires, and this will help surge you towards your goals even more quickly.
You will find your life becoming so much smoother, so much easier to glide through the days, the weeks, the months, and the years if you have effective goal-setting in place. I have just provided you with my top seven-pointers that are sure to ‘’Rev Up Your Engine and Drive Your Mission.’’ Grab your pen, smart phone, or computer and write down that first goal!