In my previous post I mentioned that having measurable goals was really motivating. You may be wondering how I went about setting those goals. I hate not being able to cite a source, but in the past few years I jotted the following tips down and can’t remember where I originally heard them. These are not my ideas, but they’ve helped me a lot and I wanted to share them. When you’re trying to reign in the possibilities for goal setting it helps to have a target to aim at, so here are seven areas of your life to set goals in.
OK, so now that you’ve got some areas to look at creating goals in, here are five things a goal should have to succeed.
- It should be specific
- e.g. “I want to lose 20 pounds,” not “I want to lose weight”
- It has to be measurable
- It needs to be your goal, not someone else’s
- e.g. “I want to lose 20 pounds” not “My wife wants me to lose 20 pounds”
- It should have a time limit
- e.g. “I want to lose 20 pounds in 6 months”
- It should be in writing
For me, I found that putting the goal in writing was the thing that really helped me stick with it. Having it there to look at is not only a reminder, but it keeps me accountable to myself. It’s a lot easier to slack off when you don’t have a promise to yourself staring you in the face.
When I decided back in January that I wanted to lose weight my initial goal was “Lose 30 pounds by my 30th birthday” it was catchy and with a five month time span, it was completely doable. I wrote it on a sticky note and had it somewhere I saw it every day. When I reached that goal, do you know what was really cool? I was able to crumble up that sticky note and put up a new one with a brand new goal, of losing another ten pounds. When I reached that goal, I set a new one.
What goals are you currently working toward?