10 Tips for setting effective goals
Do you have goals in your mind but not quite sure exactly how to execute them? Not to worry! I’m going to take you through my top tips for how to set yourself goals and actually achieve them.
1. Firstly, set aside an afternoon to review the year, quarter or even month that was. Ask yourself what you did well, what you accomplished, and what could you have done differently?
2. Think about what is most important in your life and what you truly value and write this down at the top of a page. For example, some words to get you thinking could be; health, relationships, fitness, education, work, money, happiness, purpose, creativity, energy.
3. Once you have defined your values, use them as a stepping stone to guide you through the goals you want to set for yourself.
4. Take time to evaluate the goals you are setting for yourself. Setting goals based on superficial wants or needs – “acquisition goals”, where you are looking to gain things outside of yourself - are not going to motivate you. Goals that are grounded in your values and will impact how you feel day to day will make you much more inclined to commit. You will see them through because they are meaningful and are things you are doing for yourself and not to please or impress others!
5. Make sure to write down your goals and be as specific as you can, while writing them in positive language. For example, instead of saying “I want to be less tired”, you would say “I want to have more energy each day.”
6. Once you have identified your goals, break them down into specific sub goals that will help you to achieve what you want in the year ahead. For example:
- GOAL: I want to have more energy
- SUBGOAL: I will prioritise getting at least 8 hours of sleep each night
- SUBGOAL: I will incorporate more fresh produce into my diet each day and eat at least 2 serves of vegetables
- SUBGOAL: I will take 20 deep breaths each morning to start my day feeling energized and fill my body with fresh oxygen to help me feel focused
-SUBGOAL: I will commit to going to yoga 3 times a week
- SUBGOAL: I will delegate tasks and ask for help when I need so I don’t exhaust myself.
7. Remember, you don’t necessarily need to have an end date with your goals and more often than not, they are going to be lifestyle changes or lifelong changes, combined with healthy habits you want to implement on a daily basis and want to continue with. If there are very specific goals such as learning a new skill, then you can pencil this into your planner - but just having your goals displayed as constant reminders is the most important thing so you work towards them daily!
8. Write down any obstacles you might experience when trying to stick to these goals. Common obstacles could be not having enough time, lacking motivation, or it being a costly endeavour.
9. From this, write down how you can overcome these barriers and the steps you can take. For example, if I don’t have enough time to meditate, I set my alarm for 30 minutes earlier in the morning. If your goal is to pay off your debts however the obstacle is that you have a lack of money, then start a “cost of living spreadsheet” and record what you are spending and where you could save.
10. Lastly, write down the benefits of achieving your goals. For example, if your goal is to exercise more, you might write down 'exercise brings me clarity and boosts my mood.'
Happy goal setting!