Setting goals for yourself can actually change your life dramatically!
Sounds incredible I know, but think back to the last 5 years of your life. Do you feel that they’ve simply flown by and you’re in a similar place now to where you were 5 years ago? What are the things that have changed significantly? Did these changes happen by chance or were they things you consciously planned and worked towards? Those things were your goals whether you realised it or not, so if you want to live your next 5 years on your terms, then it’s time to set some goals.
So, what goals do you choose to make? Well, it’s different for everyone. You may know straight away what you want or you may like to spend some time thinking about things that are important or mean a lot to you. You could try fast forwarding your imagination to when your 95. What are you proud of having achieved in your 95 years and what do you wish you had done but never seemed to find the time for? These will give you some good insights into what sort of goals you could set for yourself.
It’s a good idea to think about all your life areas when you’re setting your goals so you get a balanced perspective. This includes:
Mental & Emotional
Values & Beliefs
Think about how you’d like each of these areas to look and set some goals that will help you reach those visions.
Now that you have some goals identified, it’s time to make sure they’re SMART.
You can read more about what SMART Goals are in my blog ‘Creating SMART Goals the Easy Way’ and you can also download my free SMART Goal Template to record your goals. Just remember to make your goal as detailed as you can so it’s so clear in your mind you can visualise it easily.
Now you know what you want to achieve, you need to plan how you’re going to get there. Break the goal down into smaller time frames. For example, maybe your goal is to go on a round the world holiday in 5 years’ time. You can’t just wait 5 years and go jump on a plane. You need to work out where you want to go, plan how much it will cost, obtain any visas required, sort out accommodation and flights and save the money you’ll need. You would work out what needs to be done during each year of your 5-year plan. Booking accommodation would probably be towards the end of your goal period, but saving money would be in the first year.
Next you take a list of all the things you’d need to do in your first year and keep breaking them down until you get to something that you can do now. For example, you may need to save $5,000 in year 1. That can be broken down to roughly $100 per week. So, what can you do today and this week to start on this goal? You could set up a saving account purely for the purpose of saving for your holiday. You could review your budget to see where you can save $100 per week. You can create an automatic transfer so that every week $100 goes into your savings. See how you can easily break up a large goal into bite size pieces?
You need to now make sure you stay on track and keep working to achieve your goals. Set up a system for yourself where you always know what step you’re working on and what step is coming up next. You could use a simple To Do List for th
is and you can download my free ‘Things to Do’ template to use if you like. Once you’ve completed a step (or sub-goal) simply cross it off the list and start working on the next one.
Finally, schedule some time in your calendar to review your goals at regular intervals either monthly or quarterly. Use this time to check your progress, congratulate yourself on your successes to date and to make any revisions you need to either your goals, the timeframes you’ve set or the steps you’re taking.
If you really want to kick-start your goal setting, you can invest in my Goal Setting for Success Workbook which will give you detailed explanations of SMART Goals, help you determine what you actually want and give you tools to help you succeed.
Remember to maintain your focus, keep reviewing and celebrating your progress and before you know it, you’ll be crossing items off your bucket list like a speed queen and really living the life you’d only been dreaming of.