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Goal Setting

Goal Setting

We all have goals we want to achieve. Some are short term, some are long term and others really don’t have a clear deadline that we can see. All of them are important to us. They give us a way to look forward and provide us with feelings of accomplishments once we achieve them. Just the lift we need from time to time :-)

Each of us has a different set of goals based on our past experience, our age, our hopes and aspirations and what we want out of life. Some dream of getting a college education, some want to get married and have children, others want to save for a home or retirement or want to travel the world.

No matter what our goals may be we need to focus on our own needs ignoring what others around us as doing. It is our life we are planning, our future, our happiness. We are the one responsible and in charge. What anyone else does is irrelevant and only acts as a distraction on our path to achievement.

Each one of us decides on what makes us “whole”. We not only  have goals that relate to our careers.  We  also have goals for our physical and mental health, personal relationships, educational achievements, recreational activities, our social network and many others. Some goals may be family oriented while others are very personal.

No matter what kind of goal we are talking about the definition of reaching the end can be different for various people. I may want to learn Spanish to get by when I travel to Mexico and South America while my neighbor wants to be able to read ‘Don Quixote’ by Cervantes in the original text.

These are equally valid goals even if the proficiency achieved is quite different. One is not “better” than the other since each one of us will have achieved what we set out to do. Being clear about what we want to accomplish at the outset helps us know when we have arrived and eliminates the need to compare ourselves to someone else who is on a very different journey than the one we have started on.

How you go about the process of achieving your goals is also very individual . You may choose to celebrate along the way by breaking down goals into smaller steps giving you a boost of energy each time you reach the end of the next step. This is a great way to proceed towards major goals which may seem pretty overwhelming when looked at in their entirety. Someone else may prefer to only celebrate larger accomplishments. This is entirely up to you.

Here are some important but easy tips to remember:

  1. Set small, achievable goals. Break down longer term goals into manageable pieces and celebrate each step you accomplish along the way. If you are writing a book, divide it into chapters, then topics and celebrate each time a particular topic has been researched and written. You will move forward much more easily than if you keep thinking of writing the whole book which is a big project and pretty scary.
  2. Accept that setbacks will occur. The path to accomplishing a goal is very seldom a smooth one. After all, we all have many things pulling us in many directions, work, family, friends and our health. Just don’t beat yourself up at the first sign that you are not keeping up to the schedule you initially set. Just tweak , reset and move on! Tomorrow is another day and it will be different once you decide to make it so.
  3. Be realistic. You will not run a marathon in a month if you haven’t been running in years. Start with running 3 miles in a month, then work up to 8 miles,  and so on until you have reached the proper level of physical fitness to run the marathon. Otherwise, you will simply set yourself up for failure and will likely give up when you see results quickly.
  4. Understand that your life path is individual to you. There is no need to look at what someone else is doing. This is about you, not them. All you ever have to do is to be the best that you can be given who you are, what your past is and what you want to achieve. That’s it! Pretty simple, yes ;-).
  5. Ask for help. You do not need to be Superman or Superwoman. If you find you are having difficulties, reach out to someone you trust and ask for help and support. When Sir Edmund Hillary was the first to reach the summit of Mount Everest, he had the help of sherpa Tenzing Norgay. We all need help and support from those around us from time to time. Just think how many others will be celebrating with you when you reach your goal!

Believe in yourself, be determined and you can achieve anything you set your mind to. I garantee it!




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