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Ally Stewart
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Ally Stewart   My Press Releases

How To Set Goals For The Life You Want.

Published on 12/7/2011
For additional information  Click Here

How to Set Goals for the Life You Want Life is what you make of it. If you go through life just “going through the motions” and not knowing from moment to moment where you hope to land, it is likely that you will not truly accomplish anything. If you look at life as an adventure of which you get to choose the twists and turns, you will have much more fulfilment and excitement. Part of experiencing the fullness and success of life is knowing where you want to go and how to get there. This makes goal setting an integral part of reaching your true potential. Why Set Goals? Goal setting is used by all forms of success-seeking people. Setting clear, realistic goals helps you to focus your learning and exploration, clarify your methods and periodically re-evaluate your efforts to ensure you are truly heading toward accomplishing these goals. Setting goals also helps you to put your accomplishments and abilities into perspective. When these goals are realistically short-term they enable you to celebrate small achievements and gives you the self-confidence to accomplish longer term goals as well. When you are able to see your path toward your dream clearly laid before you in terms of small, achievable steps it makes realizing them seem all the more plausible. Starting to Set Personal Goals Setting and achieving goals is a multi-tier exercise: The first step in this process is to determine the “large picture”. You must first decide your destination before you begin your journey. This establishes where you want to be perhaps several years down the road. Next, you must establish long-term goals that break this projection into several-month segments that will mark milestones along your path. These long-term goals are then divided into short-term goals that can be accomplished in days or weeks. These will keep you motivated as you work toward your final goal. The final step in setting your goals is making a plan for reaching these goals. If this seems overwhelming, it is best to start with just the first short-term goal. Once you have set your goals and established a plan for achieving them you can begin moving toward the first short-term goal. As each of your goals are accomplished you will gain confidence and the security in yourself to continue working toward your dreams. Step 1: Setting Lifetime Goals Lifetime goals are obviously those that confirm what you wish to accomplish or gain in life. These can be as open-ended as the term “before I die”, or have definite end points that establish an age by which you wish to achieve them. Life goals cover several topics. By reviewing each individually you can establish goals within them, leading you to create aspirations that encompass all of them. Career – This is the first lifetime goal with which you are presented as a child. “What do you want to be when you grow up?”. Setting these goals goes beyond this to determining what position you want or how successful you wish to be within this career. Financial – Closely related to career goals, you must also determine how important financial success is to your life and how you plan to achieve this. This may mean earnings, savings, investments and other means. Education – Goals in this area can involve formal education such as earning a master’s degree, or informal learning that can be much more flexible. What do you want to know? How will you learn it? Family – How important is family in your life? Do you want to marry? Does having children for you mean a biological child or adoption? By understanding where family factors into your life, you can plan the other aspects to fit around it. Artistic – Are you an artist in some capacity? Does this artistry come with some form of high expression? For example, do you want to publish a book, have a showing in a gallery or perform music on a national stage? These goals may intertwine with your educational goals. Attitude – Setting goals does not necessarily mean accomplishing anything tangible. Personal goals may involve changing your mindset or interpersonal skills in a way that will improve your quality of life. Achieving these goals can help you accomplish goals in all other areas. Physical – Goals in this area generally revolve around health or appearance. You may want to lose weight, define your muscles or just maintain good overall health and well-being. Pleasure – Life shouldn’t be all work. Setting goals in this area are sometimes thought of as your “bucket list”, the things you want to see, do and experience. These can be extremely fulfilling. Public Service – Goals in this area of your life focus on how to make the world a better place. This can be running for office, investing in community programs or planning to leave a large amount to the city or a favourite charity. When thinking through these areas of your life first consider making lists of everything you may think you want in each. When you have finished this list, go through it and narrow it down to the most important ones. These will be your main Lifetime Goals. It is possible that what is left on your list can be incorporated as smaller goals leading up to these main aspirations. Step 2: Setting Smaller Goals You have probably heard of the five-year plan. This is a very popular length for preparing long-term goals because it is at once a long enough period of time to afford ample opportunity to accomplish large portions of life goals but short enough that it is not overwhelming. Once you have your five-year plan regarding any of your life goals in place, work backwards towards smaller goals. Establish a one-year plan, a six-month plan, a three-month plan and a one-month plan that breaks this larger plan into easier-to-handle segments. This will allow you to work toward your goal one step at a time and not become frustrated. Each step brings you closer and refreshes your drive to succeed. While working these small plans it can be very helpful to write daily or weekly to-do lists that will help you organize your progress. Seeing these small steps makes them more real and you are more likely to take the necessary action to get you to the next step. SMART Goals A mnemonic device is something used to help you remember or perform something else. This type of tool can be used to help clarify your goals. When planning, remember to make your goals “SMART” : S – Specific M – Measurable A – Attainable R – Relevant T – Time-bound An example of this type of goal setting is instead of putting “I want to be thin” on your list of goals, you establish “I want to lose 25 pounds and have a 28 inch waist by June 15 so I fit in my wedding dress” or instead of “I want to be a wrestler”, you present the goal of “By January 30 of 2014 I will have attended wrestling training camp for two years and be prepared for my first professional match.” By making your goals clear you are holding yourself accountable for achieving what you really want instead of allowing yourself “wiggle room”. Further Goal Setting Tips Setting and achieving goals can be simple, as long as you approach them realistically and with determination. State each goal as a positive statement – Avoid terms like “don’t” or references to past mistakes. Goals should be new beginnings. Set priorities – Every goal is not as important as every other goal. Work toward the most important ones first and let less important ones wait. Write goals down – Writing something done makes it less of an abstract thought and more of a reality. It also plants it firmly in your thoughts and memories, making it run through your mind often. Set performance goals, not outcome goals – Set goals that you can control, not that are dependent on the actions or cooperation of other people. Instead of “I want to marry Christine” as a goal, present “I want to be satisfied by my social relationships by the time I am 25?. This prevents disappointment from others not behaving in the way you need them to in order to accomplish your goals. Set realistic goals – Set goals that are not only realistic, but that are what you really want. Don’t let others tell you what you should be striving for or you will find working toward these goals unpleasant and unfulfiiling. Setting goals is an important part of leading a successful, satisfying life. If you are able to reach goals on the short term you will be confident in your ability to reach longer-term goals and reach your highest of aspirations. I hope you have found this information useful.
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