Setting the right goals is the key to your success

Setting the right goals is the key to your success

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to learn as you go

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If your heart does not find a perfect rhythm with your head, then your passion means nothing.”

Bono

And he added that when they do then, “Magic is just around the corner.”

(Bono had the grand objectives of access to HIV drugs for all and eliminating poorer nations' national debts.)

Have you set your goals? Are they clear in your mind? How are you doing – are you achieving all you want?  

Your goals do not need to be as impressive as Bono’s but they do need to matter to you. So how do you go about setting realistic goals – goals you want, goals you need?

Finding out what you want before you set your target is crucially often neglected when people try to choose a goal. Before you set your goals ask yourself what your values are. Is your goal compatible with them? What will it be like for you and you’re your loved ones when you reach your goal? What will life be like if you fail?

Work out the steps needed to achieve your goal. It’s OKay to dream big – but you need practical steps that you can take and measure. Your goals need to be possible and measurable. So many people set themselves either no goals or the wrong goals and then do not follow up to achieve their goals. We can do better!

Where the goal is a big one you will need to break it down into stages. You are following a pathway to success and you need to record your progress.  

What exactly will you measure? It might be reaching the small target. It might be putting in the amount of measurable effort. For example – if you want to be a brain surgeon there are steps to take. Steps you can measure like passing the school-leaving exams, gaining a place at medical school, passing the advanced exams, and progressing on to internships to help you on your way. Each milestone is another step in the right direction.

You may need to chunk it down further - spending an hour of quality revision time every day can be another way to record success. Every little step can help but it is the concrete passing of exams and finally becoming a brain surgeon that is the true measure of your success.

It is important to track your progress. Keep a record – but remember most of us are not quite perfect and the odd wobble is allowed. Don’t let that set you back. Just get back on track as soon as possible. Don’t waste time beating yourself up – it uses up too much energy.  

When you miss a goal, review what has happened. Why did you not meet the target set? There is no failure – only feedback. Learn why and then find a way to eliminate that possibility from future tasks. What works for you? What does not work?

The secret to success is setting the right goal. They should be doable, measurable, and timed. Our brains tend to be lazy. You say “I will run a mile” and your brain answers, “Fine! Next year or the year after?” And it’s not interested in your reply – so play it straight from the start don’t let you brain mess with you!

To recap:  what your goals, should be:

  •  They must be compatible with your values
  •  Doable – chunk it down into steps you can manage
  •  Record your progress
  •  Learn from your mistakes
  •  Set a time 

Some people set unrealistic goals and then don’t do the work need to reach them. They may not even try – their “goal” is just a pipe-dream. But as the song says. “If you don’t have a dream – how you gonna have a dream come true?”  

If your heart does not find a perfect rhythm with your head, then your passion means nothing.”

Bono

And he added that when they do then, “Magic is just around the corner.”

(Bono had the grand objectives of access to HIV drugs for all and eliminating poorer nations' national debts.)

Have you set your goals? Are they clear in your mind? How are you doing – are you achieving all you want?  

Your goals do not need to be as impressive as Bono’s but they do need to matter to you. So how do you go about setting realistic goals – goals you want, goals you need?

Finding out what you want before you set your target is crucially often neglected when people try to choose a goal. Before you set your goals ask yourself what your values are. Is your goal compatible with them? What will it be like for you and you’re your loved ones when you reach your goal? What will life be like if you fail?

Work out the steps needed to achieve your goal. It’s OKay to dream big – but you need practical steps that you can take and measure. Your goals need to be possible and measurable. So many people set themselves either no goals or the wrong goals and then do not follow up to achieve their goals. We can do better!

Where the goal is a big one you will need to break it down into stages. You are following a pathway to success and you need to record your progress.  

What exactly will you measure? It might be reaching the small target. It might be putting in the amount of measurable effort. For example – if you want to be a brain surgeon there are steps to take. Steps you can measure like passing the school-leaving exams, gaining a place at medical school, passing the advanced exams, and progressing on to internships to help you on your way. Each milestone is another step in the right direction.

You may need to chunk it down further - spending an hour of quality revision time every day can be another way to record success. Every little step can help but it is the concrete passing of exams and finally becoming a brain surgeon that is the true measure of your success.

It is important to track your progress. Keep a record – but remember most of us are not quite perfect and the odd wobble is allowed. Don’t let that set you back. Just get back on track as soon as possible. Don’t waste time beating yourself up – it uses up too much energy.  

When you miss a goal, review what has happened. Why did you not meet the target set? There is no failure – only feedback. Learn why and then find a way to eliminate that possibility from future tasks. What works for you? What does not work?

The secret to success is setting the right goal. They should be doable, measurable, and timed. Our brains tend to be lazy. You say “I will run a mile” and your brain answers, “Fine! Next year or the year after?” And it’s not interested in your reply – so play it straight from the start don’t let you brain mess with you!

To recap:  what your goals, should be:

  •  They must be compatible with your values
  •  Doable – chunk it down into steps you can manage
  •  Record your progress
  •  Learn from your mistakes
  •  Set a time 

Some people set unrealistic goals and then don’t do the work need to reach them. They may not even try – their “goal” is just a pipe-dream. But as the song says. “If you don’t have a dream – how you gonna have a dream come true?”  

Written by Elizabeth Horder

Written by Elizabeth Horder

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Copyright 2020 ©

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