#Goals...and Goal Setting
I received an email today that said that according to research, 92% of people never achieve their New Year's resolutions. I believe the reason that most people don't achieve their goals is because they don't plan on achieving their goals. Setting goals is easy but it's hard to come up with the necessary steps to get there especially if you have no blueprint or mentor to lay out the steps for you. Now, I'm no master at goal setting or at goal achieving but this year and the past 5 years have been pretty amazing and it's because I planned it that way. In 2011 I made the promise to myself that my next 5 years would be better than my last 5 years professionally, personally, emotionally, spiritually and most definitely financially.
As I was sitting in my parent's attic, where I lived in 2011 (I'm no longer there, thank ya Jesus!), I decided to take control of my life and especially my finances. I bought the book The Secret and read it trying to internalize it. I meditated more trying to imagine the life I wanted to live...immediately. I prayed more asking God to guide me towards my purpose. I then created a vision board taping up all of the things I wanted to accomplish within the next 5 years. I think all of those steps are awesome and necessary but eventually, I took what I believe to be my most important step. I bought a 5 subject notebook and began to WRITE DOWN my goals and how I PLANNED on achieving them by breaking them down into smaller steps.
At the beginning of 2016, I created a new 5-year plan since my first 5 year plan had gone pretty well. While doing so, I decided to share some goal setting tips and my goal setting worksheet (I'll send out the link to email subscribers):
Start "big picture" when planning your goals.
Since I love traveling, I'll use that as an example. Say you want to go to the Amalfi Coast, you'd need to figure out how to get there. You cannot wake up one day and decide that you're going (unless you're balling out of control...then by all means, go 'head on). The destination is the "big picture." You'll figure out details such as cost, travel, lodging and activities later. So when it comes to planning your life, have the end game in mind first.
Set a theme.
My 2016-2020 5-Year Plan Theme is "Expect Excellence and Success." You can take it. I won't mind. Anyhow, there's something about the word "expect" that I really love. Expect, by definition, means "regard as likely to happen" and there's no other way that I think you should go into 2017, expecting your success.
Write down your goals.
I don't get people (and if this is you sorry, not sorry) that do not write down their goals and plans to achieve them. They say "oh, they're in my head." Boo, you are not Jay Z (infamous for never writing down his rhymes). Science has proven that you are more likely to achieve a goal when you write it down. Why not take advantage.
Set challenging yet achievable goals.
It's great to have big goals and dreams but the steps to get there may be many. You can't say you want to go from making $12 an hour to over half a million dollars a year WITHIN a year. Most likely, you'd be setting yourself up for failure. Not to say that it can't be done, it just needs to be planned and executed properly (which may take years - as is common). "One popcorn bite at a time is how you can eat an elephant" is what I tell myself when I have a big goal ahead of me. Besides, every time you achieve an achievable goal you become more confident in your abilities to plan and execute more goals (and can then celebrate yourself with champagne!).
This is your life to create. You want to be as precise as you can. Instead of saying "I want to travel more" say "I want to visit South Africa...and Guatemala...and the Galapagos Island." Say it aloud (after you've written it down) and put it out there. Then, make plans to do just that. At the beginning of 2015, I told myself that I'd like to take 12 trips that year (I ended up taking 14). I wrote down the places I wanted to go and proceeded from there. The same is true of all of your goals.
Set a deadline.
I love deadlines. They're like these nagging little subconscious alarms. You're more likely to be serious about pursuing a goal when you have a deadline because your brain will remind you when you forget to remind you that you have something coming up. Put a date on it. Instead of saying "I want to pay off my credit cards" say "I want to pay off my credit cards in 18 months by June 2018" and then make a monthly plan to get there.
What are some of your 2017 goals? Share in the comments section below.