Goal Setting: Proven Step-By-Step Goal Setting Guide
Goal setting is a great tool that can turn your drems into reality on one condition… If you know how to set goals properly.
This goal setting guide is intended to provide you guidance in implementing each step towards your dreams, from setting your goals, identifying appropriate actions to achieving them and finding the discipline to stick to action plans.
Let us start now!
Step-By-Step Goal Setting Guide
Step 1. Pick your goal
This involves selection of what it is you really want in life. In picking your goal or two, make sure they are your code desires. While picking is about getting one among many others, and goal should be taken as an aspiration, the YOU part is often unclear. By you, this means YOUR goals, not any impositions by people around you, society and the influential media and advertising. It is important that you identify your goal with what makes you happy and would give you sense of fulfillment.
A very easy, effective way of picking your goal would be to write down the Awesome List. This would be a compilation of all envisioned things that would make your life totally awesome.
To get your Awesome List, set aside reality and be ruled by your imagination. Have a no-holds-barred listing of all the fantasies that would surround you in the future, including the things within you. Your Awesome List should also include the things you want to have or become, as well as things you want to be free from like negative attitudes and unhealthy habits.
Your Awesome List must also include the things that other people would say about you which you find meaningful. Renowned life coach Steve Aitchison has an intelligent but practical method to doing this, called the Huck and Tom technique. Like the story went, imagine yourself listening to people speaking during your funeral. What would you want to hear? What is it do you think you will actually hear? Closing the gap between both questions would be your ultimate goal.
After completing your Awesome List, give yourself a break. The space and time between the listing frenzy and the next step is important. What follows would need your complete focus.
Step 2. Pick Just One
Now that you are ready to get back to your Awesome List, read through it. You will need to pick just one goal. But as you would see, you have listed down so many things. Like many other people who tend to want everything at once, your list has grown so long. The huge number creates confusion and inability to focus. This then ends with bad results.
Don’t worry, there is no right or wrong here. It only goes to say that you must prioritize.
Among all the listed awesome things you want in life, pick just one. It should be the most important goal, the one aspiration that you truly want to achieve. This would mean prioritizing correctly.
But what about all the other things in your Awesome List? You would now need to re-evaluate each one. Start with looking at the likely consequences that would take place if you do not accomplish each item on your list. Do these for all the items on your list.
Once you are done, go back to the top of the list. On each item, put numbers 1 to 5 at the written consequence, with 1 being the tolerable consequence and 5 being the most terrible thing that could happen to you. If at the end of this activity you have more than one item with a 5, re-evaluate to get only just one that deserves to be called the worst possible consequence. This one would be your highest priority item.
Step 3. Make It Your Power Goal
With the highest priority item from the activity in Step 2, it is time to make it a power goal. This goal is not like all others. While all others can be considered targets for a certain period, your power goal is THE ONE.
This point can be tricky. Many people have succeeded up to this point of identifying THE ONE but decorated it with so many fantasies best left to Step 1. Remember that a power goal must be realistic and achievable; it must be positive and that which could be achieved in a set deadline as well.
For this, you would need to have a Vision Board. This activity is intended to correctly state your goal and make it a part of your subconscious. It eliminates the chance of you getting swayed away from your ultimate goal. Like any important information, a goal deeply embedded in your brain would be lived by.
To do this, code your power goal through images and words, the two most powerful ways to instill it in the subconscious. Put together, you have a goal registered in mind. Think of it this way. My goal is to go on a one month vacation this summer. This is how I imagine my “perfect vacation”:
With this, I have a clear idea of what my vacation would be and should be. Do this same thing with your goal. It helps you to stay focused.
Find a picture that represents your goal and all other minor goals in life. Have many copies of the picture. Then put one print at work, another in your car, some more on your fridge door or a framed bedside item. You could have it as wallpaper or screensaver on your PC or mobile phone as well. Seeing your power goal often will accelerate your success.
Step 4. Educate Yourself
Now that you have your power goal, THE ONE thing you want the most to have in life, it is time for further understand. Before you get to action, it is highly important that you educate yourself on a few aspects. This activity is aimed at helping you understand why you want this goal accomplished.
Let us get back to writing now. In one whole paper, list all the benefits of your power goal on one side; the other side should contain all the negative consequences. A maximum of twenty items on each category would be enough.
The objective of this activity is identifying the benefits you would get from the goal and all actions you have to do in the process. At the same time, all the listed negative effects or consequences could be helped. For example, achieving your goal to best health would mean eliminating not drinking alcohol anymore. The most likely negative effect would be cutting down social activities that would lead you to drink.
This process would help you to know what you would need to achieve your goals as well. Have these needs identified specifically according to your personal strengths and weaknesses, your preference and capability. For example, would you rather read about goal-setting books? Or would you rather listen to some tapes? Would you learn better from a goal-setting coach or expert? Or would you rather learn from a person who has notable success in goals and sticking to them?
There are various resources where you could get education. Tapes, DVDs and books are widely available today. Blogs from credible people also abound online. If you know someone who has successfully accomplished his life goals, it would be good to know more from this person.
At the end of this series of activities, you would have equipped yourself with all the important know-how to implement your set goals.
Step 5. Create A Success Map For Successful Goal Setting
Every goal in life comes with mini-goals all contributory to the success of THE ONE. This activity is aimed at creating your success map, where your main goal is broken down into smaller activities.
To know each one and prepare for the tasks you need to do for these mini-goals, it is best to have them written down. Start with the first task and complete it with an objective, plan of action, needs to implement the mini-goal and a time-frame. Remember, this is a smaller goal compared to THE ONE. So like the ultimate aspiration, make it realistic, positive and come with a specific deadline.
Do the same with all the other mini-goals. At the end of the process, you will have a very clear understanding of each plan and action. Your one life goal will also become easier to attain.
Step 6. Develop A Winner’s Habit
The past steps deals mostly with identification, processing and understanding of your goals. Now it is time to know what within you must be cultivated to surely achieve your goal. It is time to know yourself with regards to your habit, attitude in life and behaviors that could both hasten your achievement or keep you lagging.
This means knowing the strategies to cut off the negative habits; it also means you must know which habits are good and must be developed to make you win. The most potent way to get all these habits work with you is to control them.
Here are some effective ideas to get your habits controlled:
Just One At A Time
Compounding all work in a flick of a finger is impossible. But focusing on one habit at a time would definitely work, provided you will the change strongly. Know which habit to get under your control first and work on it solely for the month. Once you succeed at this, start the habit change for the next month and so on.
Write Your Commitment
To get your commitment clear visually and in your mind, it is best to write it down. This eliminates your commitment from being “dismissed as a thought.” Post what you have written down in a place you are likely to regress while in the process of breaking away from a habit. If you want to cut down TV time, post it on the TV screen.
This For That
Eliminating a habit, no matter how bad you know it is, usually leaves a void within you. For this, find a positive fill to the left space. If you must give up the long hours of social networking, get into learning new recipes or extending your work out or exercises.
Make It Simple
Complicating a chosen process lessens your chances of breaking from a bad habit. To effectively have control, make it simple. Remember, simple rules pave way to positive habit formation. Getting too many rules will just overwhelm and restrict you to the point of giving up.
Do It For A Month
Nurturing a new positive habit does not happen in two days. The best way to get it ingrained would be repeated and consistent action. Throwing out the trash can as soon as you turn off your PC at work everyday is a simple routine. Doing it for one month develops the habit of de-cluttering.
Keep It In Check
Monitoring how you have fared is very important. Not all habits are easily turned around to your favor. Check how you have done after one month or a few months. A sense of satisfaction is experienced knowing you have nailed it. Checking and finding little developments would mean you need to work harder or change methods to finally end a bad habit.
Try To Know
Experimenting on ways to form or cut off a habit comes at the start. You would only know how it works for you once you have tried it. If it works, pursue it; if it does not, try to get another method that would work.
Step 7. Get A Support Group
After the six previous exercises, you are a powerful person, changed and educated. You are determined, have focus and equipped the most important keys to achieving your goals. But you are also surrounded by forces that could chip your will to succeed. There are instances of setbacks, frustrations and distractions that could be confusing. Even with being fully geared, you are likely to encounter situations where you feel helpless and pushing on is too hard.
For these reasons, it is important to find people who support you. This means getting a support group with people who have the knowledge, discipline and apt tools to help you every step of the way. Whatever the situations you may encounter ahead, this support group would readily assist you in your goal setting journey.