13. joulukuuta 2016

How to set short term goals that support your main goals


I bet there are a lot of things in life you want to change or accomplish and if you're anything like me you probably have about the same New Year's resolutions every year where you say how THIS YEAR you're going to do this and that. But the whole concept of trying to change everything over night is a recipe for disaster. So instead of doing New Year's resolutions that you can't keep learn how to set goals for yourself. Sounds easy right? Set a goal for the next year, great, done! However if you want to have any chance of actually achieving that goal don't just leave it at that. Learn how to go deeper and set short term goals throughout the year that support those main goals you have.

Why short term goals?

So why can't we just set our main goal and start working on that? Well, it has been said that the most effective way to achieve goals is to set them for the next 90 days. It's long enough time to actually get ahead and see results but not so long that it becomes unmanageable and overwhelming.

I've noticed that by setting my goals only for the next three months at a time I stay more focused on the most important things at the moment. Also by creating 90 day goals it's easier to understand the amount of work you need to do in order to actually achieve that goal.

So obviously majority of the goals that we have in life cannot be done in three months but they CAN BE chopped down to 90 day chunks. So what you can do is to choose 1 to 3 main goals that you want to achieve next year and then think about the steps you need to complete in order to achieve those goals and chop those steps into smaller individual 90 day goals.

Short term goals

Be specific!

The most important thing when setting your goals is to be specific. You should set short term goals that are measurable. The biggest mistake you can do is to set abstract goals like "I will read more books" or "I will learn a new language". Instead you should set goals like "I will read 3 books" or "I will learn one new word or phrase of a new language every day for 90 days". See the difference?

Create a weekly plan

Now we're getting really specific! So we have that main goal that we've chopped into different short term goals. Now it's time to chop that first 90 day goal into a weekly plan of action.

So create a weekly plan of how you are going to achieve that first 90 day goal. Focus on getting to THAT goal and only after achieving that you can start planning steps for the next 90 day goal. This way you don't get overwhelmed of all the things you need to do to get to your main goal.

Reward yourself for every short term goal you achieve!

Now this is the fun part! You've achieved your first short term goal. Woohoo! You're awesome! Remember to reward yourself for this amazing achievement. Reward system gives you something to look forward to and keeps you motivated on the days you feel like giving up. So set a reward. It can be whatever you want. Maybe a new bag or a trip somewhere? You decide what works best for you.

Let's recap:

  1. Forget about New Year's resolutions. They don't work.
  2. Set 1 to 3 main goals for the next year.
  3. Based on your main goals set short term goals - those 90 day goals - that support your main goals. HOW are you going to get there?
  4. Be specific. Set goals that are measurable.
  5. Create a weekly plan.
  6. Reward yourself for every short term goal you achieve!
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