Goals – what are they and what do I want? How do I go about setting goals?
In order to make our dreams a reality we need to go about setting goals. They need to be clear, defined and obtainable. ‘Debt reduction” is a dream, not a goal. A goal is a plan to get it done and needs to be achievable.
In a lot of my 20 years of notes, I found I was going back to questions about what I really want. I would come up with similar thoughts and things I wanted to change, but obviously didn’t because for whatever reason I hadn’t focused on changing them.
In the following posts about setting goals, as I was collating them I realized that I was asking questions in lots of different ways and coming up with similar if not the same answers. I knew what was wrong, but how do I fix it. Although some topics changed over the years as the children grew up, I got rid of my house and garden, I sold businesses and the like – there were still questions I was asking.
Most of these questions came from books I was reading that I wrote notes down on at the time.
So that my posts make sense I have listed the questions and actions here so that the individual thoughts and ideas make a little more sense.
- What makes me sad?
- What is happening in my life that is adding to my stress levels, dragging me down and stopping me from being happy?
- What do I need to work at? What do I need to improve to feel better?
- What needs improvement in my life?
- What do I aspire to be?
- If money were no object what would I really like to do? Whose lifestyle would I like to copy?
- What makes me happy and where would I like to go from here?
- What will I no longer tolerate?
- What do I daydream about?
- Am I really happy about every aspect of my life, and if not what would make me happy?
- What is my life’s purpose? Looking back at would I want to be remembered for.? What could I achieve?
- What is my true life’s wish?
- Where would I like to travel to, what do I wish to see?
- What purchases would I like to make?
Then in relation to each answer, I then asked myself
- What excuses do I continually make? Why am I not working towards my goals?
- How can I accept responsibility and start the steps to change?
- How can I put different pictures in my head of the end result?
- How can I stay focused?
- What have I done in the past that I can do again to reach my goals?
- What is stopping me from getting started on my life changes?
- How can I find more time?
- What are my physical, emotional & structural Assets and Liabilities?
After analyzing each answer I need to dig further. I need to work out whether I am prepared to change the way things are or not.
- What outcome did I create? Was it good or bad and what do I need to do differently to turn into a positive?
- What am I willing to do to motivate myself?
- What’s the worst that could happen if I try to change?
- Could I make this better by just changing one small thing?
- If I need a big change, what sacrifices do I need to make so that it will happen?
- How can I stop myself from sabotaging my efforts?
- What mindset or beliefs do I need to work on to make a change?
- What pain do I associate with this and how can I focus on that to make it something I don’t want?
- What pleasure can I associate with the change I make so that I feel good about it an what rewards can I have if I make small changes? What reward will I get when I achieve this change?
- Imagine what my life would be like if I could change this.
- What small thing can I do each day to make a difference?
- What am I willing to work on and change first?
- Why??? Why would I want to change this, would it make me really happy?
- How badly do I want to change this? Is it a priority or just would be nice?
- If I want it badly – what am I prepared to do?
From the answers, I could formulate what I want and plan day by day steps to start making it happen. This is what setting goals are all about.
Whilst I need to look at my emotions, I also needed to consider my finances and how I can purchase the things I want that will make me happy. When setting goals, think about how you can adjust your finances and what sacrifices you are prepared to make to achieve those goals.
For example. One thing that kept coming up in my answers was the state of my fingernails. They are brittle and break easily and I tried wearing gloves and putting nail hardener on and all these things and still no avail. Eventually, I decided that enough was enough. I went to a nail salon and got acrylic nails. Great so 6 weeks or so later they were growing out and eventually broke or got filed down and I ended up back where I started.
So after another year of being frustrated, I tried again. This time I got them done and four weeks later returned and had them filled in. Now 5 weeks later I have an appointment next week to get them redone. I also have in my diary a note of where I will be each 4 -5 weeks and I will find the time to spend an hour getting my nails done. I no longer feel I have to sit on my hands in public so people don’t see my horrible nails. I even get compliments on how nice my nails look and if feels GREAT. One small change and I feel so good about it.
I have set my goal, taken the first step and continued the action to make it happen.
If at first you don’t succeed, Try again. Failure is just a temporary setback which means another way needs to be found to make it happen.