Setting personal goals establishes a relationship between where you are currently and where you are aiming to be. Although the process sounds basic, many people do not follow a goal setting programme, as they do not know where to start.
Firstly, they are unsure of where they currently stand, and have no clearly stated priorities or values, so find it difficult to determine where it is they want to end up. Even if they have managed to grasp the basic concepts, there is a lack of experience in selecting the challenging goals that can help drive success. They need help and direction to put theory into practice.
Committing your plan to serious goals that you are determined to stick by is crucial. Definite plans produce definite results, without this structure there is no way of measuring progress or success. These are the benefits of putting your plans to writing:
- Focus: Written objectives serve as a reference and reminder of your objectives. They keep you on course to progress, while eliminating the unwanted distractions and interruptions from your life. A written plan also helps conserve time and energy because you always know where you are, and where you are going next – there is never a need to stop and delay moving on to the next step.
- Motivation: Naturally, writing down your goals and aspirations makes thinking a lot clearer, which in turn motivates action to achieve. Just by seeing your goals on paper lends clarity to purpose and dedication to achievement.
- Measurement: Written goals are a good indicator of success, and give individuals a target to work towards. Without goals, it is more difficult to judge progress, and motivation is lost as a result.
- Compatibility: Transferring your goals into writing assures their compatibility. Once they are spread out before you, it becomes a lot easier to check each of the goals and spot any inconsistency between goals and value. Any conflicts between individual goals in requirements for time and resources becomes immediately visible, allowing you to alter targets accordingly. This practice enables you to highlight the priority goals, and eliminate the elements that are time-consuming and unimportant.
- Stimulation: Committing your plans to writing stimulates and helps form the habit of visualisation that, in itself, lends creativity to all you undertake. Being able to visualise the end result helps self-motivation and breeds success through a self-fulfilling prophecy.
- Self-fulfilling prophecy: By clearly outlining and defining your plan, strategy and goals, your commitment to achieving them becomes firm. Over time you begin to shape a clear mental picture of who are, and who you want to become. When goals are vivid and clear they act as a magnetic force to draw you to them.
Learn to incentivise your hard-work and determination. It is important for self-motivation to remind yourself of the rewards that will be yours at the end of the journey. Detail the advantages to be gained and the losses to be avoided by accomplishing each goal – these are the compelling reasons you have for taking action. By taking the time to appreciate the rewards that you will enjoy after completing every goal, you will find the inner-strength to overcome every roadblock along the way.
As you list the anticipated rewards, include those both tangible and intangible. It is important to highlight the physical possessions you will enjoy as well as the deeper, more emotional satisfaction you will achieve by persevering. It doesn’t matter what the rewards are, if they’re important to you then include them in the list. Anticipating the enjoyment of the rewards will encourage you to redouble your efforts to achieving your goals. Visualising the rewards of your success is a concrete step towards achievement.