Jan 2020

Turn Your Goals into Reality

by | Jan 1, 2020

 

Most people begin the new year with a genuine hope of seeing their lives improved in some way. Have you ever failed to accomplish your goals and ended the year disappointed? Of course, you have; we all have dealt with that. How do we actually turn our good intentions into goals that can be attained? Here are 6 realistic steps for effective goal setting:

 

  1. Remember to think of all the categories that make up your life: People often focus on accomplishing goals in the areas of their lives which are most natural to them.  The areas that people often shy away from are those that require more time and effort.  Here are categories that all people share and should evaluate equally:
  • Financial – Have you prepared your short, mid and long-term financial goals? This will help you avoid the stress of not having your financial house in order.
  • Spiritual – How are you deepening your relationship with God?
  • Family – How can you prioritize time and activities with your family to build rich relationships?
  • Physical – How can you intentionally incorporate physical activity and rest into your life for better health?
  • Career – How can you rekindle your drive to live out your calling in your current career? What areas do you need to improve, or what action steps do you need to take in order to have the career you want?
  • Intellectual – How can you be intentional with your time so that you are always growing and learning?
  • Social – How can you deepen your relationships or set necessary boundaries with unhealthy ones? Are you making time for fun?

 

  1. Goals need to be written down: This is the first step in order to turn your goals into reality. Goals, when simply left in your head, can seem hard to track and accomplish.  Written goals force you to see them and set a plan in place. There are many studies that prove you are more likely to accomplish your goals by simply writing them down.

 

  1. Goals need to be SMART: Often, goals are left too vague.  Using the SMART methodology for goal setting forces you to think through all of the critical steps that it will take to accomplish your goal. 
  • Specific: Make sure your goals are specific and identify a tangible outcome.  Don’t simply say that you want to read more this year.  How many books do you want to read?  What books do you want to read? 
  • Measurable: Simply, this measures how you’ll know that you achieved your goal.  It’s not enough to say that you want to lose weight.  How many pounds do you want to lose overall? How many pounds should you lose per week to meet that goal?
  • Achievable: Your goal should push you, but still be attainable. For example, if your goal is to save money for a down payment on a house, what is a feasible amount of money that you can set aside from your paycheck?
  • Realistic: Your goal may be to spend more quality time with the ones you love. It may not be realistic to plan a costly evening out each week. A more realistic goal is to plan a couple big outings a month, and then be more creative with the other events you plan to fit your budget.
  • Timely: How long will it take to accomplish your goal? What regular intervals can you set to monitor progress?

 

  1. Goals need to be tracked through action steps: It’s not enough to simply write your goals down; you also need to monitor your progress toward accomplishing them. You should have regular intervals to make sure you are on track to meet your goals. A good idea would be monthly or quarterly check-ins (depending on the goal).  As you meet these little milestones, it will motivate you to push forward toward meeting your big goal. All goals require specific actions steps that need to be taken. The last couple pages of our Personal Goal Setting document will help you to break down your goals into smaller action steps.

 

  1. You need a push partner to help you meet your goals: You need someone in your life that can lovingly, but honestly keep you on track. This person is there to push you to succeed through the hard times.

 

  1. Accomplished milestones and goals should be celebrated: It’s time to celebrate a job well-done! It’s important for you to celebrate your success with people who support and encourage your growth.

 

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