This New Year don’t make flimsy resolutions that you will soon forget. Instead, take the time to make some solid goals for your future. Below is a bit of helpful information found in Jim Rohn’s videos on Goal Setting and a point by point plan to help you set your own goals and design your own life plan.
Goal Setting for a New Year
The only life form on earth who can change their future is humans. The goose always flies south. It might be easier to go east or west but the goose will never go that way because it’s built into its genetic code to fly south. The goose can’t change its course.
Humans, however, can live five years one way and then live the next five years in a completely different way. As human beings we can change our direction at any given moment and completely alter the course of our lives. But many of us never take the time to set our course. Our days are spent reacting to whatever life throws our way, hoping and dreaming of a better future, sometimes without even really knowing what that future would look like, let alone thinking about what we need to do in order to get there.
That’s why setting goals is so important. Goals help us clearly define where we want to be in the future and develop a concrete plan to make sure we get there.
Don’t know where to begin? Follow these easy steps and take control of your future today:
1. List five things you’ve already accomplished that you are proud of accomplishing.
2. What do you want in the next 10 years? If there were no obstacles barring your way and you could have anything you wanted what would you choose? Write down 50 things! Cover all areas of your life, community, family, health, career, money, personal, spiritual, etc. Really let yourself go, if you could do anything, be anyone, accomplish anything, go anywhere, own anything … the sky is the limit! There are no right or wrong answers.
3. Now go back over your list and beside each item put a 1, 3, 5 or 10 for the number of years you think it would take you to accomplish this if you made it a goal. If you think something might take longer than 10 years, just put 10. Then total how many items you have for each number of years. Do you have any 10 years? If you don’t have many, that means you’re not thinking about the future very much. And it’s important to think about where you’re going so you can design your destination.
4. Looking only at your one year goals from your previous list, choose the top four most important goals for you to accomplish in the next year. Do you have four? If you don’t have four, you’re living too much in the future, too much in dreamland. You’re not in control of your destination, but just leaving it all up to hope and chance.
5. Looking at your top three most important one-year goals, write a little paragraph about why each one is important to you. This part can be difficult to do, but critical to the process. When the why gets stronger, the how gets easier. If it was worth it, you could do anything. So that’s why understanding the why or the worth of your goals is so important. Purpose is a much stronger force than object. Why is it important to have a five bedroom house with a three car garage? So you can have a place for your large family and friends to gather and celebrate special occasions? That sounds like a good answer. Or do you want to impress everyone so they’ll know you’re important? Might want to rethink that goal. Are there other ways to impress people like with acts of kindness or by improving your skills, being the best you can be? Think about it. It’s okay to have objects like a big house as a goal, but very important to have purposeful reasons for wanting those objects.
6. Think about what kind of a person you must become to achieve these goals in the next year. Confident, determined, strong, knowledgeable, skilled, well spoken, more focused, disciplined? What must you do to become this person? It is the person you become in the process of achieving the goal that is most valuable. Beware of what you become in pursuit of what you want. Judas got the money is not a success story.
7. Develop Goal Plans. Make a plan of the little things you can do each day, every evening, or the second Wednesday in every month to bring you closer to achieving your goals. This is your Action Plan. What skills must you acquire, who should you meet, what knowledge must you have, what financial capital is required … and how will you acquire them?
8. As with your one year goals, select the top three most important goals for each time frame and write down why they are important, think about the kind of person you must become in order to achieve them and make a plan to bring you closer to achieving them. Also, have you set goals to cover all the areas of your life? The key is to put everything on your list. But it’s also crucial that if something is not that important to you, take it off the list.
The direction you take will determine your destination. You can’t change your destination overnight, but you can change your direction. In five years time you’re going to arrive at a destination, shouldn’t you decide where that will be?