Last week we looked at why you should have a vision. Now that you’ve done that, how do you actually achieve it? The best way to accomplish something long term is to break it down into smaller chunks. Let’s call these chunks ‘goals’. To achieve your vision for the year, you need to set some goals, as well as have a way to track them so you know how much progress you’re making and where to put in more efforts or change things around.
Here are 8 things to keep in mind on goal setting and tracking goals:
- Set Goals that are Important to You: You need to be motivated about your goals. They have to mean something to you, or you won’t put any firepower behind working on achieving them.
- Prioritize your Goals: You don’t have all the time in the world and many things will compete for your attention so you need to arrange your goals in order of importance, and the most important ones are those that you will work on accomplishing first.
- Set SMART Goals: Your goals must be
- Specific – Clearly spelt out and well defined.
- Measurable – You need to be able to measure the effect and impact of those goals.
- Attainable – Set goals that you can accomplish, but not overly easy goals.
- Relevant – Set goals that are aligned with your life plan and your purpose.
- Timely – Your goals must have deadlines. A goal with no timelines is just a wish.
- Write Down Your Goals and Put Them Everywhere: Your goals should always be within reading distance from wherever you are – be it in the bedroom, in the kitchen or at the office. Seeing your goals written boldly on Post-It notes or held by magnets on the refrigerator will serve as a daily reminder to you to work on your 2019 vision.
- Create a Strategy for Achieving Your Goals: Some people stop at writing down the goals, and don’t create a plan for actually working in achieving them. Make an action plan to help you meet those goals. This plan could include using an organizer, making schedules on your calendar, shutting off all media when working, creating budgets for your finances, and so on.
- Stick with the Program: Once you have set your goals and created a strategy, do your best to stick with it – lasting change only comes with consistency. Don’t give up halfway, if the plan isn’t looking feasible anymore change it and continue.
- Create a Visual to Track Your Progress: You can get a board for your workspace and outline your goals on it, complete with start and end dates and desired results. At the completion of each goal, strike it off the board and do a celebratory dance: you earned it.
- Track Your Time: You can set timers for your goals so you’re prompted to finish your tasks on time. There are also a lot of great apps out there that you can use to track the amount of time you’ve spent on working on your goals and other activities. The aim of this is to keep your eye on the goals and make adjustments where necessary.