Setting goals is important in achieving success. But setting goals isn’t enough… Every year in January, millions set New Year’s Resolutions yet studies find that only 8-12% follow through on their goals.
Despite a growing pool of studies suggesting U.S. workers are having a hard time creating a healthy work-life balance, the most recent report in 2015 from the Bureau of Labor Statistics suggests Americans’ work habits haven’t changed dramatically in more than a decade.
Setting goals is ever important to reach a successful work-life balance. You see we all can set goals, but if you really want to reach the goals you need to have discipline and a plan. Here are some tips to help you in not only setting goals but reaching your targets.
1. Be clear be specific.
If you want something, you have to be specific about it otherwise you may not get exactly what you want. For example, if I want my business to grow and I simply set the goal to grow my business I may only get one client. The goal was met, but it wasn’t the right goal. Instead, I should have been more clear – I want to grow my business by 30% or more. Look at what you want to achieve and layout the goal with specifics; the type of growth, your ideal client type of opportunities or even your ideal weight. The more specific the more likely you will achieve the desired outcome.
2. Visual anchor.
A picture is worth a thousand words. Put your goals into pictures to help solidify and make the drive for them stronger. A visual anchor will help you both visualize and focus on the goal you want to achieve. As you focus on it, your frame of reference expands to allow for opportunities and connections that will lead you to your goal. Michael had some big goals; he wanted a new car, to purchase season tickets for the local basketball team and to be recognized for excellence in his field. He found pictures of items that represented these goals and placed them on a vision board that was in his office. Every day he saw the picture and it helped to motivate him and drive him. Within 9 months all the goals were achieved.
3. Connect with the positive gain.
What will you get when you achieve your goal? We set goals to achieve something great, yet along the way we can get distracted, tired or lose focus. Take a moment to connect with why you want your goal. Focus on what the goal will bring you and how it will change you for the better. Connecting with the gain allows you to re-connect and re-energize yourself to continue pushing forward.
When we share our goals they become more real. Telling others about our goals gives us the ability to not only share our excitement for it but also acts as accountability. We know others will expect us to complete our goal, pushing us to follow through. Share your goals with those closest to you, those who believe in you and those that will encourage you along the way.
A goal without a deadline is just a dream. Having deadlines allows us to get things done in the timeframe needed. Think about when you take a trip, you have to get to the airport at a certain time or you will miss your flight. In all the craziness, we always make it on time. We do this because we have a deadline. Give yourself deadlines for your goal; don’t just focus on a deadline for completion, but also for other steps along the way. Have deadlines for the outline, when you start, mid-way point, etc. The more you can take a goal and break it down into smaller deadlines, they easier it will be to move toward the goal celebrating each milestone along the way.
6. Have fun.
Having the discipline to follow through can sometimes feel like a chore. Make sure to have fun. Celebrate little wins, give yourself rewards and enjoy the process. The more you can enjoy the process, the more you will want to reach the goal.
What do you want to accomplish? Take a moment to look at your goals, reconnect with them and use some of these tips to help you reach completion. Your goals are waiting for you!