Are your goals letting you down? You might think that is a strange thing to ask. After all, goals are meant to help you achieve things, so how could they be letting you down?
During my 4 years studying for my psychology degree I learnt a thing or two about goal setting, both in terms of how they work psychologically and how they help you achieve the things you set your heart on.
But goals that are not properly defined, lack emotion or imagination or that have no specific end date are most definitely going to let you down and here’s why…
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A goal needs to be “SMARTIE” if it’s going to serve you well. The more SMARTIE it is, the more likely you are to achieve it.
If you’re wondering what on earth I’m jabbering on about, bear with me and I will now reveal all…
Let’s look at each one in a little more detail so that you get the principle and understand how to apply it to your own goals from now on.
These need to state exactly what you want to achieve. For example, saying I want to make more money is no good and it won’t help you.
Instead you need to say something like: Next year I will increase my annual income to $XXXX.
Now you have put an actual amount in play and you have stated that it is your annual income that you intend to increase and not just to get some extra money through a random refund that you didn’t expect.
This specificity is what will help you to stay on track and measure your goals.
These are goals where you can quantify your progress. You are able to measure your gains or monitor your losses. If you can’t measure your goals you will never know whether or not you have actually achieved them.
You will need to include some milestones so that you can see you are moving in the right direction. These milestones are just stepping stones to get you from A to B in smaller steps.
Making smaller steps is easier and this will help you to achieve your goals more easily.
These are goals that you actually have the power to achieve. For example, you can’t impose your will on others. If your goal involves someone else doing something then it is not achievable. Your goal must be something that only you is working towards.
They must also be goals that you have it within you to accomplish. This doesn’t rule out having to learn new skills or acquire new knowledge but this would obviously have to be included in your milestones.
Knowing what is and isn’t realistic will help you to set better goals for yourself.
These goals are ones that you know you have the power within you to achieve. They will not be something that is so far removed from where you are at the moment that they are more of a dream than a goal.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t set your goal to be a millionaire, but you need to assess where you are right now with your finances and then set some actionable steps to get you to where you want to be.
Depending on how far away from the millionaire status you are right now will determine how many action steps and milestones you will need to set yourself.
Having a realistic time frame will also help you to stay focussed and not give up.
These goals will have end dates. This is very important because if you give yourself forever to do something, it will inevitably take forever.
By setting a time frame you are setting expectations for yourself. This will lead to more actions and this will lead to more results. The faster you see results, the more you will believe that your goal can be achieved and this in turn will drive you on to success.
The more you taste success the more you will be able to imagine yourself achieving your end result and this will really drive you onward.
These goals are ones where you see yourself already experiencing success. It might be that you see yourself driving that sports car or wearing that designer outfit or seeing your very healthy bank statement or seeing a more satisfying result on the bathrooom scales.
Putting imagination into your goals will make your subconscious think that they have already happened. The brain cannot distinguish between imagined and reality. If it thinks it’s already happened it won’t try and sabotage your efforts by trying to talk you out of it.
Many people talk about visualisation and how powerful this is as a tool for bringing about success. It is the same thing here. You image (or visualise) your success and success will surely follow.
These goals have emotion attached to them. When you think about achieving them they make you feel happy, successful, wealthy, free, desirable, attractive, smarter etc. etc.
The more emotional your reason is for setting the goal, the more chance you have of achieving it. That’s not new either is it?
Someone who has been injured and told they will never walk again but have gone on to walk. Their goals were surely driven by emotion and the need to walk again.
Someone who has lost lots of weight before their daughters wedding even though they have been trying to diet for years without success.
Someone who has given up smoking after suffering a heart attack even though they have tried to quit hundreds of times before.
Having an emotional attachment to a goal will make it 100 times more likely that you will succeed in it.
It isn’t really that goals are hard to achieve, it is that what you have set your goals for that are hard to achieve. If it were easy you would have already done it or have it and there would be no need for a goal would there?
Goals are easy to achieve. They are just a series of tiny steps, one foot in front of the other until you reach your destination.
It’s taking the actions (or steps) that’s the hard bit. You will find that you are fighting yourself. One part of your brain is saying, go on, you know you want this while the other is doing everything in its power to stop you.
Have you ever quit smoking? You want to be healthier (or wealthier) and you know it’s a bad habit and one that will not do you any good. You have all the right reasons for wanting to quit but a few hours in and you are already in trouble.
Your brain is telling you that you really really REALLY need a cigarette right now. It is telling you that you are miserable and if you just have one tiny cigarette you will feel better and can then get on with quitting.
To be honest, this isn’t really a bad thing, in fact it’s more of a protection thing. your brain knows that you are going to experience pain from giving up the smokes and it is trying to protect you from that hurt.
But you need to convince it that you are serious and that you don’t mind the hurt for a while because in the long run you will be healthier and happier.
Once your brain knows that you are serious it will start to help you rather than hinder you and then you can really get on with the job of quitting.
All goals are like this. Whether you want to earn more money but are frightened to quit the job you have (and know). Whether you want to lose weight but have to go without those sweet things you love. Whether you want to get fitter but have to give up your time in front of the TV to go the gym.
So now that you know all of this, are your goals letting you down? Do you think that you are not achieving what you want because you are not setting your goals properly?
Do you think that if you learned a bit more about goal setting you could, in fact, achieve absolutely anything that you set your heart on?
I did. I learned how to set goals properly and so far I have:
So how’s that for starters? I’m now planning even bigger and better things for myself and my family.
Ask yourself these questions…
Would you like to be a successful goal setter and have success show up for you in abundance?
Are you fed up of saying you are going to do something but then never quite manage to actually do it?
Do you find it difficult to imagine yourself as anything other than who and what you are right now?
Are you full of good intentions at New Years but by the end of January it is all forgotten and you go back to life as normal?
Do you wish that you could succeed at just one thing in your life that you have set your heart on?
If your answer was yes to one or all of the above questions, I’m pleased to tell you that I can help you.
I have created an online course for my business clients called “The Goal Conquering System” and I’m going to let you have a copy for FREE just for reading this blog post. Just complete the form below for instant access.
It will lay out exactly how you need to create your goals for maximum effect, and it also includes a 4 week workbook where you get to set a goal and see it through to success…. if that’s not enough to convince you I don’t know what is.
Grab your totally free copy of my “Goal Conquering System” and see how you can even increase your income while you’re learning how to do it!
Note: Please open it on a desktop and not your mobile as it is a PowerPoint presentation with workbooks attached and so will not work on your mobile.
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