22 Days till the Big Bang….. Setting Goals is Easy, Taking Action? Not So Much!!

Whether it is setting your goals and plans for the first day of the new year, or anywhere in between, actually setting your goals is easy. The challenge comes in when you have to take action on them; consistently, persistently and completely. That said, this posting will ensure you first have your goals down on paper, in a form that you can use to execute, track and measure your success….so your chances of success are that much greater, since goal setting generates focus, clarity, energy, confidence and excitement toward pursuing the tasks required.

If you are not sure of the questions to ask or the steps to take to define your goals; don’t worry, you are not alone. A great many people would prefer to keep their goals in their head, simply because they won’t admit to the fact that they just aren’t sure of how to define their goals.

As stated before, this part is easy, as you can follow these steps at any point to initially create or revise your goals throughout the year.

Steps:

  1. Dedicate a journal, notebook or online note pad, to My Yearly Goals.
  2. Date the first page of the journal so you can immediately start tracking your progress against your defined goals
  3. Write out the following questions pertaining to the possible goals you have – answering each one by one:
    1. What do I want to have achieved by the end of the year (quarter, month, week, day – you choose the timeframe)
      1.  Consider all areas of your life – emotional/mental, physical/fitness, work/career/business, relationships/family, finances, spirituality/religion
    2. Why is it important to me to achieve those goals?
    3. What impact would it have on me (and my life) if I do not achieve those goals
    4. What am I willing to sacrifice compromise or walk away from to achieve these goals?
  4. Now that you have a good understanding of the goal(s) you have, you need to get a lot more specific in order to turn those ‘wants’ into measurable and actionable goals. For each goal:
    1. Detail all of the specifics about the goal, for example: it is not a goal to say you want to ‘make a lot of money by year end’. What does ‘a lot of money’ mean? Instead, you want to the goal to become tangible in every respect, i.e. “I will have earned $50,000 in salary, of which I save 5%, invest 5%, pay down $1000 of debt, and able to pay all of my bills without worry.  You could want to ‘increase business sales by 10% this year, so your yearly revenue is $100,000. The more specific, the more effective you will be in targeting those intended results
  5. A next step is to ensure you can measure your progress along the way for each one.
    1. For example, if you have the goal of a $50,000 salary – if you are within corporate, you would then need to be able to measure if you are successful in obtaining that salary through a new job, promotion, bonuses, etc. Define the tactics that can be measured of you achieving that goal. For the business that wants to earn $100,000 in revenue – what does that mean you will have to do in sales on a weekly, monthly, quarterly basis to get to $100,000
    2. Be sure to do this for each goal you defined above
  6. Now state a deadline or due date that you want to have achieved your goals. Some goals could be just a month or 90 day period, others may go the entire year. Get specific down to a date that you want to have completed this goal
  7. Next, I am a huge proponent of ‘simple is best’. If you have more than 3 goals listed out above, firs, prioritize in importance all of the goals you have defined, with #1 being the most important
    1. Now, only focus on the Top 3 – no more!
    2. All too often, people miss out on their goals because they become overwhelmed by the work that goes in to pursuing just one of them. Don’t misstep before you even get going; focus on only the Top 3.
  8. Taking your Top 1 goal first, make a list of all of the tasks and activities that you need to take action on in order to achieve your goal. Fill up the pages if there are many…..just be as specific as possible. This is creating your “Honey Goal Do” list that you will use throughout the timeline you defined, so you stay on track with the things that need to be done to achieve the goal.
    1. Exactly like in step 3 – you want to keep things simple. Just like you sweat over a long list of house chores or tasks, possibly never getting to any of them, you will do the same with your Honey Goal-Do List if you let it.
      1. Prioritize the list of to do’s from #1 – most important ….to…….
      2. Each day going forward, focus on ONLY 3 of the top tasks and activities for any one goal
      3. NOTE – if you choose to focus on multiple goals at the same time, instead of picking 3 top tasks for each, creating a Honey Goal Do list of 9 for each day, pick ONLY 3 tasks from across the goals you want to take action on

Remember – you want to keep things simple, focused, and doable, so you feel confident you will succeed. Don’t overwhelm yourself by wearing rose colored glasses at the start, thinking you can do it all. Give yourself some breathing room and treat your goals as a marathon, not a sprint.

It is better for you to achieve 1 goal, than to fall short on achieving several of them. Agreed?

Good luck, and let me know if you have any questions.

Check back for additional tips, advice and tough love on preparing, planning and pursuing your goals to RICHes.

Bernadette Boas is the ball of fire behind Ball of Fire Consulting, Ball of Fire Inc. (media/publishing) and her book Shedding the Corporate Bitch, Shifting Bitches to Riches in Life and Business. Bernadette is a speaker, radio personality of Shedding the Bitch Radio, business growth consultant and coach, and the leader of the Shedding the Bitch® movement.

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