Last updated on April 6th, 2022 at 05:38 pm
Want to reach your goals this year? Follow these three steps when setting your goals. I have been using them for years to achieve goals as big as running a marathon, completing a triathlon, building an income generating blog, writing a book and more.
3 Steps For Successful Goal Setting
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1. Be Realistic, But Still Stretch
If you want to be successful at reaching your goals, you have to set goals that you can reach. Yes, big goals can help motivate you to stretch and grow, but when goals are too big, they can deflate your “I can do it” boat and leave you feeling like you are drowning. There has to be a happy medium.
What I like to do is set a mix of easy to obtain goals and goals that will stretch me each year. For instance, if you read my list of goals for 2019 below, you will see one desire I have for 2019 is to increase my body strength, one of my goals to make that happen is to hold a full body plank every evening before I turn on the TV. That seems like a small goal, and it is.
Holding a plank each night is simple and should be easy for me to remember to do each night once I make it a habit. But I also set what I call a Wow Goal for the amount of time I would like to be able to hold that plank for by the end of the year.
I wrote in-depth about setting a yearly Wow Goal a few years back. This year instead of setting one HUGE Wow Goal I am setting several smaller Wow Goals that are still going to push me out of my comfort zone, just in several areas of my life instead of one.
Trust me, right now the end of year goal for the length of time I want to hold a plank doesn’t sound remotely possible without being consistent with my daily plank goal all year long. The wow portion of my plank goal will push me out of my comfort zone.
What you need to do is make the smaller goal something that can quickly become a habit, and the larger Wow Goal something that takes that habit a bit further than you think you are capable of right now. The easy win will spur you on to the wow portion of the goal.
2. Concentrate on Habit Stacking
I highly recommend reading the book The Power Of Habit: Why We Do What We Do In Life And Business.Within its pages, you will learn how to stack habits and once you learn this skill, you will bust through your goal list.
Here is an example of habit stacking that happened in my life this year. I set a goal to start the day by drinking a full glass of water before eating or drinking anything else. It didn’t take me very long to make this goal a habit and soon I woke up craving water. At that point I added a new habit, I started drinking a full glass of water after my cup of green tea. Once that was a habit I started drinking another glass of water after my mid-morning cup of coffee. Habit stacking now has me drinking at least three full glasses of water a day. Yes, I know the healthy water goal right now seems to be a gallon a day, but three cups is a start and I am hoping to continue stacking on this habit in 2019.
3. Do What You Need To Do To Stay Motivated
Many people write their goals down in a fancy journal and then place that journal on their bedside table and forget about their intentions before they are even a week old. Don’t let this happen to you. Stay motivated to reach your goals by first remembering what they are. To do this, I like printing out my goals several times and placing them in places I look often. A copy goes in the binder I use to stay on track while I am working, one goes in my morning devotional bag, and another gets placed on the back of a cupboard door that I reach into several times a day.
Don’t stop the motivation there, though. Make sure to tell several people about your goals. Ask some people if they want to join you in reaching one or a few of your goals and form an accountability group. Post your goals on social media.
Another great way to keep motivated is to set rewards for goal milestones at the same time you are writing out your goals. For instance, perhaps one of your goals is to lose 20 pounds by year’s end. When you hit 5, 10, and 15 pounds lost, give yourself a non-food reward and when you reach your goal of 20 pounds lost, give yourself a bigger bonus. Oh–don’t forget about every pound in-between! I know people who when losing weight would buy themselves a single rose each time they lost one pound. That sounds like a pretty sweet motivational setup to me.
For More Successful Goal Setting Advice Read
- 7 Books That Will Help You Stay Focused On Reaching Your Goals
- How To Form Habits That Will Help You Reach Your Goals
- How To Stay On Target Toward Reaching Your Goals
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