Goals are very powerful. Most importantly, they provide us with a target. What’s the likelihood of accidentally accomplishing something that makes your life much better? Great accomplishments require intention. Having intention keeps your mind sharp and searching for solutions.
Of all the things we learn in school, most of us were never taught how to set an effective goal.
For best results, avoid these 9 goal-setting mistakes
1. Setting too many goals. Instead of having a multitude of goals, try setting one highly meaningful goal. When you have a history of success, increase the number of goals you’re simultaneously pursuing.
- Too many goals can be overwhelming and spread your resources too thin.
2. Choosing goals that aren’t highly meaningful to you. If you’re going to limit yourself to a single goal, it’s especially important to choose one that’s highly desirable to you and will have a great impact on your life.
- The more you want it, the more likely you are to aggressively pursue it.
3. Expecting things to go smoothly. A highly desirable and meaningful goal is unlikely to be reached quickly and easily. Expect a few bumps along the way.
- Keep a positive attitude and simply assess the situation when things don’t go the way you had hoped. Change your approach and try again.
- Using this process to move closer and closer to your goal, regardless of the circumstances, how could you not be successful?
4. Not recognizing signs from your subconscious. If you’ve set a desirable goal, it’s only natural that you’d pursue it aggressively and enthusiastically. If you find yourself procrastinating, losing your enthusiasm, or failing to take action for any reason, your subconscious is trying to tell you that something is amiss.
5. Setting an unreasonable timeline. Things always seem to take longer than we expected. Try to be realistic and set a deadline that’s reasonable and takes into account a few challenges along the way.
- By not giving yourself enough time, you’re risking the possibility that you’ll feel discouraged when you don’t complete your goal on time.
6. Failing to measure your progress. Imagine having a weight loss or financial goal but never weighing yourself or measuring your income. You’d never know where you stood relative to your goal. Review your progress on a regular basis.
7. Setting goals that aren’t realistic. There are many goals that appear unrealistic, yet are realistic with an adequate deadline. However, there are also goals that are highly unlikely to be reached. For example, if you’re 55 years old and 5′ 5″, you’re not going to play in the NBA.
- You can accomplish great things, but some things simply aren’t an option, regardless of the timeline. Seek wisdom in telling the difference.
8. Setting goals that take too long. It’s much easier to stay focused on goals that are limited to around 12 weeks.
- If you have a goal that will take longer than three months, determine where you would expect to be in three months and make that your goal. Big goals are likely to require several smaller goals that ultimately lead to its completion.
9. Not having a clear endpoint. An effective goal is measurable and has a clear endpoint. For example, “making more money” isn’t an effective goal. A penny is more money. Would you be satisfied with that? Be as concise as possible. Ensure you can measure your goal.
A goal is a gateway to a happier life. But setting effective goals takes practice, and it’s important to avoid making these common goal-setting mistakes. Avoid these mistakes and you greatly increase the odds of realizing success!