“The trouble with not having a goal is that you can spend your life running up and down the field and never score.”

~ Bill Copeland

You always hear that it’s important to set goals, and here’s why: Goals help you prioritize how you give away your time. Goals help you measure progress. And the right goals give you motivation to do the work. And if you’re going to go to all the trouble of setting goals, you should write them down. There’s good reason for that too.

Watch the video below, or read the blog post that follows for 4 (or more) steps to goal-setting success.

Hey, Michelle Cederberg here, continuing the conversation about success, and the energy that you need to get there. Last week I introduced my Success-Energy Equation, and the four cornerstones of: Direction, Discipline, Mindset and Health. Today I want to talk a little bit more about that first one; DIRECTION…The goals you set, where you’re going and where you WANT to go in your success journey.

Yes, direction is about goals that we set for ourselves in work and life, but I want to say it’s more about those ‘outside the comfort zone’ goals, that when we set them will bring about the promise of high level health, happiness and success! And who doesn’t want more of that?

So, I’ve got a few questions for you around goals:

  • Do you set them? Anytime of the year, anything at all, small, medium, large, do you set goals?
  • Do you set personal and professional goals?
  • Do you write them down?
  • Do you regularly review and revise your goals?

When I ask this question of my audiences, most people do say they set some goals. I lose some people when I ask whether they set both personal and professional goals, but where I lose most people is when I ask whether you write them down. Most people do not write down their goals, and those who do, not many regularly review and revise them.

But I can tell you right now, when you do those four steps, and do them regularly, it shifts how you attack your goals, and it’s important for goal success.

Now if I take a step backwards, why do goals even matter in the first place? I’m sure you have an idea about this, but goals first of all, they give you focus. They help you keep your eye on the prize, your eye on the horizon. “I know what I’m going after because I can see it right there.”

Goals also help you to prioritize. What do I say yes to in my day?  What do I say no to?  If you’ve got that goal clarity, it’s pretty clear what you need to say yes to. If it drives the goal forward, the answer is yes.

Goals will also allow you to measure progress, especially if you’ve set the goal well. You can see yourself moving forward and you can see yourself getting closer to that goal.

Goals also give you motivation, but interesting new research suggests that motivation alone is not always enough to ensure success. And I will talk more about why (and what to do about that) in next week’s video and blog.

Most people who don’t set goals admit that it’s just too much pressure… because they don’t end up doing them, and then they just feel guilty, and so they figure WHY BOTHER.

If that’s YOU, you’ve likely set the wrong goals, or you haven’t found a way to make the right goals JUICY enough that you can’t wait to tackle them. Watch my video about putting ART in your SMART goals to get past that one. It’s an important one.

But you know what else? Goals… good ones that are worth achieving, actually take work. And work isn’t always fun… but the OUTCOME is!

So when you’re struggling, put your eye back on the prize. That’s why it’s so darn important to write down those goals and put ’em where you can see ’em (I’ve got a video about that too by the way). This is so you can keep your eye on the prize, like I said, be reminded of it, and focus on the small steps you can take EVERY SINGLE DAY to get a little closer to achieving it.

So how about taking a bit of time today to get clear on the direction you want to go on your success journey?

Grab a pen and a piece of paper, write down one personal and one professional goal that you’d like to achieve in 6 months, or maybe just three months, or maybe you want to start small with a one month goal so you can see how this works.

Pin it somewhere you can see it every single day, and get those #DTFW (do the freakin’ work) juices flowing.

We’ll talk about motivation next week, and why it’s not necessarily what you need for goal success. Plus, I’ll share new research about what is. Very interesting!

Until next time I’m Michelle Cederberg, reminding you that you get one chance to do this life. I say Dare to Live it Big!

Michelle Cederberg, CSP, MKin, BA Psyc

Empowering today’s dreamers, leaders and go-getters to create the life and career they want.


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