It’s been said that everyone has goals, whether we know it or not. We have goals to keep our current job, or to get a different one. We have goals to save for the future, or to travel, take a vacation, or purchase the things we need and want to make our lives more enjoyable. An important distinction, however, is that top achievers are very intentional and focused on their goals, while many of the rest of us are not.
Top achievers know that the wording, structure, timing and format of a goal can make it’s achievement much easier – or far more difficult. Top achievers understand the basic skills for setting and reaching their goals, every time! They know how to design goals that create success. Here are the 10 most important steps to set and achieve your goals:
1. Reachable goals are SPECIFIC. Top achievers know that to reach their goals, the brain must know exactly, precisely, what they are trying to accomplish. Never word a goal with vague terms like “some” or “a little bit”, or “more”. Be specific! If you want to lose 8 pounds and reach a weight of 175, specify those exact numbers. If you want to save $200 this month, be exact. Your brain can help you accomplish almost anything if it knows precisely what you are aiming for.
2. Reachable goals are SIMPLE. Many people describe their goals in complex terms of retiring on the beach in Hawaii, with nice cars and lots of money, and…. Their list goes on and on. Any ONE of those things is a great goal, but the combination becomes over whelming and the brain gets confused. If you want to retire in Hawaii, just say so! If you want to increase your sales by 10% this month, say so! Keep your goals simple, clear, and focused.
3. Reachable goals are SIGNIFICANT. No one can muster the enthusiasm, hard work and courage to reach a goal they don’t really care about. A reachable goal is one you really, really, REALLY want! It’s something that will change your life, enhance your health or wealth, and make you proud. It gets your juices flowing, gets you up in the morning, and keeps you going all day long, because it is important! Set goals that are worth achieving!
4. Reachable goals are STRATEGIC. High achievers know that the best goals accomplish many great outcomes, all at one time. Running a 10K race will almost certainly: 1) feel great! 2) help you lose weight. 3) lower your cholesterol level 4) strengthen your heart 5) lower you risk of heart disease 6) increase your energy and stamina, and 7) improve your outlook. Design your goals to strategically impact as many areas of your life as possible. You’ll have more reasons to reach your goal and more excitement when you do!
5. Reachable goals are MEASURABLE. A goal without a measurable outcome is just a pipe-dream. You can’t achieve a pound of “happiness” or 6 inches of “self-esteem”, but you CAN get a new job. You CAN run a mile in under 7 minutes, or do 100 sit-ups. Someone has wisely observed that, “What gets measured, gets done.” Define your goals in terms of height, weight, dollars, inches, or hours. Then measure your progress until you achieve your desired outcome.