A Primer on Goal Setting

“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to.”
“I don’t much care where –”
“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.”
― Lewis CarrollAlice in Wonderland

If you leave your life to chance, there is a good chance you won’t be happy. There is no shortage of books written on goal setting, or of people who talk about how to set goals. I even gave a short presentation to a great company you can watch by clicking here. For you readers, let me try and simplify it:

What do you want? Why do you want it? When will you celebrate? How will you do it? That’s it- the secret to setting a goal.

What do you want?

Start general, get specific. Saying you want to lose weight is a great place to start, but after a trip to the bathroom you just completed your goal. Get more specific. “I want to lose enough fat to fit into size 6 jeans” is a great goal to use as an example.

Why do you want it?

Attach some emotion to your goal. If you are disgusted, if your are fed up, if you can’t stand to spend one more day of the madness, then you will change. Until you have the why, and it irks you to your core, you won’t change a thing.

When will you celebrate it?

Set up milestones to hit, and stick to them. If you don’t celebrate the wins along the way, you’ll get to the end and have missed the journey. Set a goal for what it makes of you to achieve it. This is important because once you hit it, the only thing that has changed is you/ You still have negative co-workers. You still have stressful deadlines. However, the new you can handle them differently because of the person you turned into during the journey, during the struggle.

How will you do it?

You must answer the first 3 questions before you hit the last one. The how is easy. Why? Because if you want it bad enough you will find a way. If you want to lose weight but fail, and then quit, it was not because you didn’t know how. It was the why- the why was not strong enough.

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