271019 Goal setting
If you are going to get into better physical condition, then you need a plan and setting up your plan requires having a goal, or goals to reach. Goals are objectives that are just out of reach now, but with proper attention can be achieved with effort on your part.
Don’t set your sights too low. It’s always easy to hit the ground and anyone can do that but you aren’t just anyone are you?
Striving for a goal is an incentive that provides added impetus to any endeavor worth doing. The question commonly arises; do you need to set goals? Many people achieve a degree of success without setting goals for themselves. However, every highly successful person employs some type of goal setting in their strategies, which leads directly to their success.
If you are making good progress and things seem to be going well, then why bother setting goal? Good question. If things start out well then you more than likely will not notice the absence of having set a goal. If they begin poorly then a goal will give instant feedback and allow a correction to be made in the strategy. Goals help provide a look into the future by establishing direction, feedback and support along the way.
Therefore, if you want to be successful, then the answer to these two similar questions has to be yes. If, on the other hand, mediocrity is ok with you, then don’t waste any time setting goals.
Effectively setting goals makes a person pay closer attention to the details of obtaining the short-range goals. These are necessarily included in the steps of reaching the long-range goal. Persistent daily, weekly, monthly and yearly steps taken toward your final goal produce results, not because they are written down, but because they are habit-changing behaviors.
However, not all goals are the same. Internal goals are stronger motivators than are externally set goals. An internal goal is more likely to be achieved than one set by someone else-no matter how much that other person may mean to you. It is just NOT the same. YOU have to want the final result for yourself, not because someone else wants it for you. The secret is developing a well-structured, closely defined goal that you want to achieve.
Having a well-defined goal guides a person toward their destination by offering:
- Direction: Goals provide a roadmap to where you are going and give specific directions on how to get there. It truly is a roadmap to a person’s success.
- Feedback: If you stray off course, the built in indicators measuring your progress will alert you that a course correction is necessary
- Evaluation: Constantly assessing your position, relative to your ultimate goal, will show whether you are making progress toward the objective.
- Support: Sometimes it can be a good idea to let others know about your goals so they can offer encouragement when you are feeling low and about to give up.
Effective goal setting changes behavior. In outcomes that are successful, behavioral change is a vital key. Behavior changes that result from effective goal setting include:
- Improved training which becomes more productive
- In competition where behavior is more focused with less loss of nervous energy
- Productive training where various skills are practiced on a periodized schedule
Follow the SMARTER goal setting method, where each letter of the acronym stands for a rung on the ladder of success.
S stands for specific
M stands for measurable
A is for achievable
R asks if it is a realistic goal
T indicates time ended
E means you evaluate at certain points along the way
R reminds you to revise the program where the evaluation shows a break in progress.
Keep in mind that a well-defined goal includes these following points:
Review the steps you will have to go through to reach your goals.
- Clearly identify your skills and talents so you know when to ask for assistance in reaching your goal.
- Closely estimate the time frame for reaching these goals, and understand it will not be an overnight process
- List the benefits and the risks of working toward the goal
Make the steps crystal clear. Include in this process all of the anticipated difficulties that may be encountered along the way so you have a good idea of what you are up against.
In other words, unless a goal is specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, time ended, constantly evaluated and revised when necessary, it is simply a dream with no starting or ending to it.
Live your dream; don’t just dream of living it.