Goals 101: Setting The Right Goals
Since I graduated from college back in Honduras, I learnt how to set goals or some type of plan for myself. Although, the field that I was working at was very goal driven, I did not feel like I needed to set goals in paper simply because I was lazy. I knew that I had a plan already in my head and I knew what to do. But, having a plan in your head does not necessarily mean you really have a plan. This is how you recognize whether or not you have set the right goals towards your future.
1. You have written down your goals
My mentor once said: “a goal not written down, does not exist”. It took me roughly four weeks to understand this concept. I didn’t understand why was so important to write down my goals, why did I have to be detailed about them, why spend time on such thing. It is simple. When you have your goals set, you already know what direction you are headed to. It is hard to have a direction when the plans we have set are just in our heads, nowhere else. You can shift the direction of your goals when no one can see them, but if you have them on paper, it becomes harder to change because you are committed to it. Now, what’s the most appropriate way to set goals you may ask? Here is how:
R1) Result 1: What’s the outcome you want to achieve
A1) Action 1: Step one of your goals
A2) Action 2: Step two: What’s next after step 1
A3) Action 3: What’s the step to wrap it up?
It is imperative for us to outline a good plan prior execution. A poor plan can lead to poor results, an overwhelming plan can lead to dislikable results.
2. Your goals are your priority
If you don’t think of your goals as being the most important task you have in life, then you will never achieve anything. The ability of prioritizing everything we do, determines how far we can go in life. If our priorities do not match with our goals, then more than likely we haven’t set the right goals. Goals should be the #1 thing we should emphasize on. It shouldn’t be anything else.
3. You have accountability partners
Accountability is the glue that ties commitment and results. Having someone who can help you get to where you want to be will enable you to push far beyond expectations. Having multiple accountability partners helps us get better at what we do because it helps us get a better perspective into things. An accountability partner shouldn’t be telling you what to do and what not to do. Instead, push you towards your goals because he/she understands your goals and wants to see you get there.
4. Your goals make sense
Do not set something outrageous as a goal if you don’t have the time to achieve it, nor, set your goals below the line you should be setting it to. If you set the bar too low, unfortunately you won’t be able to move beyond that point. Do not settle for too little, but don’t set goals way to high either. Be reasonable as far as where you want to be in a certain period of time. i.e, I want to be able to open up a university in Honduras within the next nine years (part of my ten-year plan). I know the profit requirements ($1.5m). I know the law regulations and I know what else I need to get to be able to handle my goal. Now, it is up to me to achieve it. The goal makes sense to someone if I was to show them my outlined goals for such project. It is better to under promote and over deliver.
5. You are excited to set the bar
Goals can be tricky, specially when we have so much going on in our lives. However, our goals are a refection of ourselves. If we strive to become the most important piece in whatever organization we work, then we should emphasize on setting a good goal as well as a higher standard for ourselves. Our product or outcome is determined by the steps we follow, but also by the goals we set. If we are not excited to be the best at what we do and set the bar on a daily basis, then nothing will go to where we want it to be.
“Never set a goal that you never intend to accomplish”