Goals part 2 - goal setting tips
“Without goals, and plans to reach them, you are like a ship that has set sail with no destination.”- Fitzhugh Dodson
A quarter of the year has gone and I’m sure many of you are saying ‘Already! That was fast!’ For some the last 3 months has been very productive and for others you probably feel like you would rather forget them. But don’t despair! You’ve got 9 more months remaining in the year and here’s your chance to make them into something special. I want to share a few useful tips on goal setting:
1. Be precise
What exactly do you want to achieve? The more precise you are about your goals, the more likely you are to achieve them. If you got on a bus and didn’t decide where you wanted to go, then rest assured the bus driver will make that decision for you – at the last stop! Paul says “I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air.”1 Corinthians 9:26NIV
2. Set priorities
Put first things first. Keep your major tasks before you. A powerful technique is to use the ABCDE method for setting priorities. With this method you put each letter before your goals to symbolise its importance. A is for very important or must do tasks, B is for important/should do tasks, C is for nice to do tasks, D is for tasks you can delegate and E is for eliminate when possible. For example lest say you had a list of goals you wanted to achieve today but needed to prioritise them. You would put an A in front of the most important to indicate that this is a goal that must be done and B next to the goal that is important and should be done. If you had several very important tasks then you would label them A1, A2, A3, etc – in order of importance.
3. Recognise your obstacles
What will prevent you from achieving your goals? How will you handle your obstacles? It’s easy to set a goal, but frustrating when you come up against unplanned obstacles. Obstacles might include finances, experience, manpower, knowledge, etc. Once you recognise your obstacles it is then easier to plan the necessary skills, knowledge and resources required to accomplish your goals.
4. Set deadlines
“Goals are dreams with deadlines.” - Diana Scharf Hunt
Deadlines are essential because they do three things. They motivate you to move quicker in the achievement of your goals, they bring your goals from ‘dreamland’ to reality and they help you determine how much progress you are making.
5. Write them down
If your goals are not written down, it’s harder to take them seriously and clearly remember them. When God gave Habakkuk a vision He told him “Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it.” Habakkuk 2:2
6. Think long term
In 1970, Dr. Edward Banfield a sociologist from Harvard University did a study to determine why some people became more financially independent during the course of their working lives. His discovery was that these people had a particular attitude of mind which he called ‘ long time perspective’. They took into account the affect of their present decision on their future lives.
7. Make forming good habits part of your goals
Setting goals are different then forming good habits. A goal might be to lose ten pounds in two months, but a habit might to form a lifestyle of healthy eating. They are both good to achieve, but the habit of healthy eating will help to prevent the need to set a goal of losing ten pounds again.
8. Be accountable to someone
If you know you struggle with self discipline then working with friends or colleagues on your goals is a great way to keep you on your toes. Sometimes knowing you’ve got that eye looking over your shoulder is helpful in the initial discipline process. If need be your friend can also be accountable to you. “As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.” Proverbs 27:17
God bless and protect
Quote of the week:
“You must have long-range goals to keep you from being frustrated by short-range failures.” - Charles C Noble