Goals are a process – and the process works. You identify what you want, you create a plan (Actually, a range of plans) and you implement it. If you look at any ‘successful’ people, almost every single one of them was using a goal setting process – whether they realised it or not. They all had a clear idea of something that they REALLY wanted and they took all the steps they could to get there with focus, determination and consistency.
So why should you do goals? Is everything in your life where and how you want it to be? Do you ever have challenges or problems that need solving? Do you get distracted or procrastinate about doing what you want? Most importantly, do you know what you want? Setting goals can help with all of these areas.
Goals are the vehicle that will drive you to where you want to be, and they are the vehicle that will address that problem that’s been niggling you. You are the fuel.
That’s great but…I don’t know how to set a goal
So how do you set a goal? Here’s two ways you can try to get clarity on what you’d like to do. Grab a pen and some paper and jot down what comes to mind as you read through this next bit.
Complete a wheel of life assessment of all key areas that make up your life. Rate them on a scale of 1-10 where 1 is not satisfied at all and 10 is that you are very satisfied. Pick those areas you want to focus on to bump up towards ‘very satisfied’. NB these are your versions of satisfied not what you think others expect! If you’d like a template simply Google ‘wheel of life’ – there’s heaps of versions out there!
Write a letter to your self as if it were 10 years from now. Use details, who are you with, how do you feel, why do you feel that way, what are you doing, what are your daily activities etc. Tomorrow, on a separate piece of paper write it again, without looking at the first one. Do this a third time (again without looking). Now collate your letters – what are the common themes? These are what you want, and you should again select three areas you want to focus on that will get you either to, or closer to, that 10 year later life!
Then WRITE IT DOWN – writing your goal down makes you more inclined to take action (up to a 42% increase in the likelihood you will take action!) – place them on your fridge, tell your friends or family, or use them as a screen saver on your phone.
Plan out key actions you need to take for each of your goals – this saves you continually having to rethink again, and again, and again (which in turn will de-motivate you). I’m not specifically covering planning in this article, so if this is an area you are unsure about or need help with please get in touch.
I have tried before and it hasn’t worked
If you’re finding you’re not gaining momentum with your goals, then you may need additional support – like a cheer squad, having a coach can support you in progressing your goals in many ways but if I had to capture the top 4 this is why it can be so effective:
1. Clarity – don’t overlook how important this is. Often we set goals we think we ‘should’ be doing but don’t really have a strong desire or connection to achieving the goal. Spending time upfront to get clear on what you really want, makes a big difference on the journey you experience along the way.
2. Accountability – having a bad day or week? Having a coach brings that element of accountability to the fore. You’ve got an impetus and driver to take the action (you are after all paying someone to support you through this process) and your coach shouldn’t be making you feel like a recalcitrant student either – they should be supporting you in understanding what may be holding you back.
3. You avoid what I call the ‘slide’ effect – how over time the actions you need to take for your goals fall by the wayside, become less of a priority or drop completely off the radar. A good coach will help you to identify what is causing the impasse and enable you to build new strategies to push through that change. Change is uncomfortable so having that support there can mean the difference between success or frustrated failure.
4. Recognition of efforts – often we are so focused on getting to the end and accomplishing our goals we lose sight of the most important part (in my personal opinion) and that is the actions we took to achieve the outcome we were after. A great coach will highlight these so that you can understand what to repeat, and that you celebrate your achievements – after all, you put in all the hard work!
If you’re interested in finding out more about how we can support you achieve your goals contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org