Tips to Setting Goals: Understanding Your "WHY's"

goal setting personal growth productivity Aug 20, 2021

"What do you want to achieve?" "Why did you set this goal?" These are just some of the questions we should ask ourselves when setting goals. But, first, we must understand what we hope to accomplish with our goals and clearly understand why it is essential.

Importance of goal setting

It is essential to have goals in life. Goals give direction to our life. When we set goals, we know where to direct all our efforts, actions, knowledge, and resources. Without goals, we might wander in our life and can lead to problems later on, such as a troubled mind or depression, because we do not know what to do in our life. Life will look just like a tedious grind if we do not have goals.

Set goals effectively

When setting goals, you don't just put them willy-nilly. It's easy to set a goal because everybody else pursues a particular purpose, such as getting rich. However, it is good to have a dream that has some emotional connection to you personally, something you can be passionate about while pursuing it. You know you will be pleased upon achieving it.

If you don't have a goal yet in life, you can first try setting up a plan that follows the SMART acronym. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound. What this means is that your goal has to be realistic and is achievable. It has to be within the realms of your knowledge and skills so you can attain it one day. You might not achieve it immediately, so you can try gaining additional training and learning along the way.

Once you have figured out your goal, you can set a time frame of when you want your goal achieved. Start with the overall picture of your dreams, like how you see yourself for the next 10, 20, or 30 years. Don't focus on this big picture too much, though, since you might become overwhelmed, resulting in you not taking action to fulfill your goals. Instead, break down the timeline of your goals into smaller chunks. For example, if your goal has a 20-year deadline for accomplishment, break it down into what you will do every year and what progress you should have made per year, followed by months, weeks, days, even up to hours if you want. Doing this could focus on small tasks that gradually build up as you work towards your bigger goal, and this is where the idea of doing things 1% a day can work.

Understanding why we set goals

We are free to set goals in any area of life that we want to, be it health, career, business, finance, family, relationships, education, or personal development. Indeed, goals give you direction and a sense of accomplishment once you meet them, but it doesn't automatically mean you will feel fulfilled once you achieve them. Even during working towards our goal, we might get lost and engage in procrastination, and this is where we can try to think of why we sought a particular goal in the first place. When we lose focus on our destination, we might have forgotten why we wanted to pursue our dreams and for what.

An excellent way to get back on track is to remember the emotions involved when you start thinking about your goal. Why did you want to pursue this goal? What are you hoping to get out of it? By asking yourself these questions, you will see the importance of the goal you are working on achieving. For example, if your goal is "I want to become rich," ask yourself why. Dig deeper, and you might remember that others are looking down on you because you are poor and saying negative things about you. You then make your goal to become rich not because you want a lot of money but because you don't want to stay in a poor state, and you want to prove to others what you are capable of doing. By having the goal, you are giving direction in your life, but also that emotional attachment gives you energy and motivation to work even harder on your goal. Your exact goal now is: "I want to become rich, so I can prove to others what I am capable of." Follow this up with something like becoming rich so you can use your fortune to help others. Now, your goal is genuinely worthwhile to achieve.

Fulfilling what we want to achieve

Achieving goals is a very satisfying thing to do in life. Goals help us get to our best life and give us reasons for doing in life. To maximize your performance on your journey, you could try doing some things to help you achieve success.

Along the way, you will be doing a multitude of tasks. It could be impossible to remember every tiny detail that requires attention. You can try taking down notes or write everything necessary in a journal. While doing some of your tasks, you could even try listening to music for some inspiration. When you are starting to lose focus and motivation, it won't hurt to get the help of a life coach. A life coach's job involves improving motivation and helping you with your personal growth and development. If you feel lost, a life coach can help you determine why you are doing the goals you set and implement systems and processes.

Goal setting is essential in our lives. However, it is also crucial to have goals that you genuinely want, not goals dictated or forced on us by others. It is vital to set goals that are realistic and measurable. This way, you can gauge how far you are already in your progress. Using the "I want to become rich" goal, you can set it more precisely by indicating how much money you want to have to consider yourself wealthy. For example, by the first year, you want to have $1 million in savings, the following year is $2 million, and so on until you ultimately achieve your goal of $10 million. You can measure how rich you are by having numerical figures instead of stating you want to become wealthy without knowing the exact figure you want to obtain.

The journey doesn't end once you achieved your goal. You could try working on another one. There's no limit to it. You can aim for multiple goals but try not to overwork yourself too much. You can make your goals short-term or long-term depending on what's more suitable for you. Also, if you feel your goal is not worth pursuing anymore, and the things you do are not working anymore, you can always change to a different goal. Remember that goals can be flexible and can vary depending on what is happening currently in our lives. Take note of the other pointers we mentioned for goal setting and remember "why" we are doing the goal in the first place.

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