Setting Goals

14th October 2014 by Grace Bullingham

Setting Goals

Why set Goals?
All kinds of people set goals; top profile athletes, successful business people and generally people who want to achieve something. Setting goals can give you long term vision and short term motivation. It helps you organise, prioritise and meet deadlines to get the most out of your work, yourself and your life.
By setting clear, structured and measurable goals, your whole outlook will change. You will see a forward way of thinking and recognise what you are and can be capable of.

Think about the long term goal
The first thing to do is create the ‘big picture’ of what you want to achieve – for example – ‘I want to own my own coffee shop in 10 years’ time’ or ‘I want to be fit’. It doesn’t matter how general your goal is but thinking about these statements will make it clear what is important to you. Recognising these importances will help guide you and keep you focused on reaching your end goal.

Then think of all the things you have to do to get there – bite size goals

You have to be realistic. Goals aren’t set to reach in the short term. They’re designed to help you achieve something you have to really work hard for. To achieve your big picture, the next thing to do is think of all the things you need to do to get there.

In terms of owning your own business you need to understand the core values of business itself. How will you do this? Will you study a specific course? Will you have a business partner? Where would you like to set up your business? Can you do it financially? How much money do you expect to make? There are endless questions regarding a business ownership – a lot of research and planning is required.
In thinking about physical goals, what changes do you need to make to be fit? Do you want to lose weight? Do you need to change your eating habits? Do you want to work towards running a marathon?

Use the SMART method to create actionable goals.

Specific. Goals do not have to be too specific but they can’t be too loose. Instead of thinking  "I want to get fit” try, "I want to run my first half-marathon this year."

Measurable. Tracking your progression will help you see how much you’re achieving. Instead of saying “I’m going to run more”, say “I will run 3 miles 3 times a week”. This is much easier to measure, and you can see what you are capable of.

Attainable. If you set your bite size goals too high you are more likely to give up. You can always lower these goals to work your way up which will help you work your way to the top. Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day!

Relevant. Is your goal relevant to your current lifestyle? Is there anything that could interrupt your goal? Is your goal worthwhile?

Time-related. Setting a ‘deadline’ to meet goals will help keep you on track. Remember to be realistic. Instead of saying “one day I will run a marathon you could say “I will run a marathon in 2015”. Sign up for it as soon as possible!! This will encourage you and give you more purpose to reach your goal

Remember - Don’t Fret
Goals are lifetime achievements, everyone has their off days but try not to think ‘I’ll never get there’ or ‘I HAVE to lose weight’.  Adopting this negativity has already distracted you from the initial reason of setting yourself these goals – time to re-focus!

Reward yourself!

It’s easy to be extremist especially if your goal is sports related. Track your progress and give yourself time off to relax and reflect on what you have achieved so far.

You can do it!


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