The Do’s and Don’ts of Setting Goals
Setting goals is important for your growth. Whether you want to save money for a house or lose weight, setting goals is thinking about the future. Setting goals allows you the opportunity to feel motivated and push yourself to achieve those goals. To set goals you can achieve, you’ll need to know the dos and don’ts of goal setting.
Goal Setting Do’s and Don’ts
Goal-setting might seem easy in theory but can be quite difficult in practice without arming yourself with the right knowledge.
Do’s of Goal Setting
Achieving your goals requires understanding what you should do to help you achieve those goals. While everyone’s goals are different, you can use these do’s of goal setting to help you set achievable and actionable goals.
If you’ve never set goals before, then make sure you give yourself an attainable goal first. Your goals can’t be reached in a single day. For example, if you’re a landlord, you can’t set a goal to reduce vacancies and hope to achieve it in a single week.
Instead, start small. A landlord can set a goal for filling one vacancy a week until all of their vacancies are filled. The same concept can be applied to any goal. If your goal is to lose weight, then you can’t expect to do cardio one day and see results on the scale the next.
Write Your Goals Down
Whether your goal is to control your business’ costs or improve your health, you should write everything down. Writing your goal on paper will make it feel more real and attainable. Then, place your goal somewhere where you can constantly be reminded of it. For example, if you want to save up for a therapeutic pillow, put a sticky note on your credit and debit cards asking yourself if the next purchase you make is worth putting your goal off for a little while.
Talk About Your Goals
Once you know what your goal is, talk about it with everyone you can so people will follow up with you about it. For example, if you tell someone you’re trying to lose weight, they will eventually ask you how your progress is coming along. The more people ask you about your goals, the more you’ll feel driven to achieve them. Plus, the more people you tell, the more support you’ll have.
Set a Deadline
Deadlines help keep you on track. If you don’t set a deadline, then you might not achieve your goal because you’ll feel like you have an unlimited amount of time. If your goal is to lose weight, start with a realistic deadline of losing 5 pounds in your first month.
You can also set milestones for bigger goals. Financial goals are one type of goal for which you can set milestones. For example, if you want to purchase a house and need a downpayment of $50,000, you can set deadlines for saving $10,000 at a time.
Be Specific About Goals
If you want to lose weight, your goal should include some hard numbers. For example, come up with the number of pounds you want to lose. You can start with a small number at first so you can achieve that goal and feel motivated enough to continue until you reach your ultimate goal. If you wrote your goal down, be as specific as possible.
Don’ts of Goal Setting
While goal setting requires knowing what you should do, it can be helpful to figure out what you shouldn’t do. There are many things you should avoid when goal setting, including:
Setting Too Many Goals
You can only focus on one goal at a time if you want to achieve it by a certain deadline. If you can’t focus on a single goal, then you’ll get distracted and eventually give up when your expectations aren’t met. So instead, try achieving one goal at a time.
While you may want to accomplish many things at one time, try to set one goal and achieve it before setting another. For example, if you want to lose weight and save one thousand dollars, choose which one is most important to you and start there. Once you get the comfortable setting and achieving goals, then you can consider taking on the next one.
Let Setbacks Set You Back
Everyone makes mistakes and stumbles when it comes to achieving their goals. Don’t let it deter you if you get busy, lazy, or cheat on your diet. While you may have eaten above your recommended calories for a day, it doesn’t mean you can’t make it up the next day.
It’s normal to have small failures, but you should never let those failures deter you from achieving your goals. For example, if you want to learn a new language, don’t let being unable to understand a native speaker stop you from continuing your studies.
If you fail to reach your goal, you shouldn’t feel the need to give up. It could be you didn’t set realistic expectations or deadlines. Failure doesn’t mean you will never achieve your goal; it just means you have to make adjustments to your goals so you can achieve them.
Sometimes achieving your goals requires having a better, more detailed strategy. For example, it might not be as simple as cutting calories when you’re trying to lose weight. If you don’t lose any weight in your first month, consider figuring out how many calories you should be eating and track your daily calorie intake.
Setting goals can be easier once you know what you should do and what you should avoid at all costs. Make sure your goals are realistic and you set deadlines for achieving those goals. There’s no reason to get in your own way when it comes to your goals. Instead, write down your goals and come up with solutions that can help you effectively achieve them. No matter what your goal is, all it takes to achieve it is dedication and hard work.
Matt Casadona has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a concentration in Marketing and a minor in Psychology. Matt is passionate about marketing and business strategy and enjoys San Diego life, travelling, and music.