4 Steps Toward Better Goal Setting

Setting meaningful goals is difficult for many people. One common problem is that they just don’t know how to set a goal, what it should consist of and what makes a goal effective and not effective. Here are four ideas that have helped me and maybe they’ll help you too.

1. Make It Personal

The idea is to make the goal your own. For example, you might list "Save $50 a paycheck" as a goal. That’s good but if you state it like "I save $50 a paycheck" it puts it in your mind that you will be the one attaining the goal. You have to think all the time about wording it this way because it’s easy to state it more vaguely. I did this on my About page goals. I’ll need to go back and revise them to give them more power.

2. Make it Concise

A goal should be short, mainly because long ones can give you wiggle room to avoid the goal or can be used to blame something else for failure. Don’t allow yourself any weasel words like ‘may’ or ‘perhaps’. Cut them out of your goal vocabulary.

3. Make It Specific

A goal should also be specific, aka measurable. If you don’t set a goal line easily it doesn’t make it much of a goal, does it? Don’t make it where you can move the goal line. Instead, give a specific value, if you can. For example, you don’t say, "I want to lose weight for Christmas", instead, you say, "I will weigh 150 pounds on Christmas."

4. Make It Accentuate the Positive 

Try not to set your goals as a negative. For example, instead of saying "I will lose 25 pounds by Christmas" say instead "I will weigh 150 pounds on Christmas." This puts a more positive spin on what you’re trying to achieve and this typically helps you see it through.

I know I ran over these fast so if you have any questions or any ideas of your own toward better goal setting please leave a comment so that we can discuss them.


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