How to Set Goals & Achieve Them
Do you find yourself caught up in the hype of goal-setting, only to realize that you have not yet achieved your goals from last year? Are you overwhelmed with a sense of guilt and disappointment in yourself? Do you start beating yourself up because you haven’t achieved these goals yet?
If that is you, then keep on reading.
I’ll share with you a tried and tested method that I tell my clients to use to help them achieve their goals. Let’s begin by learning how to set achievable goals for yourself.
First, take stock of how far you've come. This is a mindset of celebrating your wins in the previous year.
What are some accomplishments that you’re proud of from the previous year? It could be something big or small. Think about achievements you’ve made in your work, health and relationships. Ask yourself:
Have I managed to stay healthy this last year?
Did I cook more at home and eat healthier?
Did I start exercising more?
Was I able to spend more time with my kids?
Did I learn any new skills?
Did I grow my savings account?
Did I pay off any old debt?
Did I become more self-aware?
Am I more cognizant of my triggers?
Do I feel like my mental health has improved?
Am I setting myself up for success each day?
Was I able to connect more with my friends overseas?
Have my overall relationships gotten stronger?
Think about all of your goals and accomplishments. Write down some of your wins.
Notice which positive qualities you needed to accomplish these wins. What are they? Which qualities will you bring with you into the new year?
At the end of 2020, you had to exhibit grit and resilience to get through the year. The trials from the pandemic caused us to pause and focus on what’s important to us. You had to be:
Take a moment to recognize your strength. Celebrate your wins! You made it through a difficult year.
Now, let’s think about the upcoming year ahead of us. What are some things that you’d like to achieve this year? You can be as specific or general, as you’d like to be.
Write down your goals as it comes to your mind. Don’t worry about getting it right the first time. Your goals will evolve as you begin to think about it, and they can become more specific over time.
Next, think about how you want to be. We already talked about how you were and what you want. Now, focus on thinking about how you want to be.
For me, I want to be more curious this year. I want to learn something new every day. I want to be more grateful and enjoy the little things in life. I want to be happy and laugh more. That’s how I want to be.
Now, imagine it’s the end of the year. You used all of the qualities that you wanted to develop this year and achieved all of your goals.
Close your eyes and visualize this moment. Describe this moment in the past tense, as if you have already achieved each goal.
Get specific. For example, if a goal of yours is to purchase a house, then imagine yourself holding the deed to that house. Ask yourself:
What do I see around me?
What do I hear?
How do I feel?
Keep your eyes closed and take in this moment. Fully associate yourself with this scene. Connect yourself to the intensity of the moment.
Are people around you to cheer you on? Are they saying, “well done!” and “great job!”? If so, increase their volume a bit more. Hear their cheers and remember how this encouragement feels to you. Are you feeling,
Connect yourself to this feeling. This is your future self.
And it’s attainable.
Now, look back in time to the current day. You’ve just discovered your upcoming timeline for the year.
In this timeline, there are milestones of you setting goals and objectives. There’s also celebrations when you achieve these goals. You may feel nervous at the beginning of the journey as your current self.
Don’t worry. Because your future self will guide you through each step.
Whenever you feel anxious, just ask yourself: what advice would you want your future self to tell you? This will help to calm you down and give you clarity on your next steps.
Complete this exercise so you have a tangible feeling of the person you want to become. It’ll become so real to you that you can almost touch it. It’ll awaken a motivation for you to show up as your future self.
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