When we want something, we generally imagine the form it will take when it manifests. If we’re not careful, however, we can find ourselves attached more to the imagined form than the actual desired outcome. This is like placing an online order and expecting it to come in a blue box shipped by UPS. If we then receive a red box delivered by FedEx, we might not realize that it’s what we ordered, and never even open it!
For example, most of us say that we want money, but when money comes in the form of a free coffee or a gift or a discount, we don’t see it for what it is. We overlook it, and maybe we even say “No, thanks” and decline the gift, which is, in one way or another, still money. In doing so, we fail to appreciate the value of the discount, the gift, or the freebie. If it isn’t cash being handed to us, we don’t see it as a manifestation of our desire.
What are the key aspects to learn and remember when studying and writing our goals? Here’s a closer look at goal setting and how you can make it forceful and practical:
1. Evaluation and Reflection
The only way we can reasonably decide what we want in the future and how we will get there is to first know where we are right now and what our current level of satisfaction is. With our focus on goal setting, the first order of business is for each of us to set aside some serious time for evaluation and reflection.
2. Dreams and Goals
What are your dreams and goals? Not related to the past or what you think you can get, but what you want. Have you ever really sat down, thought through your life values, and decided what you really want? This isn’t what someone else says you should have or what culture tells us successful people do or have. These are the dreams and goals born out of your own heart and mind, goals unique to you, and that come from who you were created to be and gifted to become.
3. SMART Goals
SMART means Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-sensitive.
Specific: Don’t be vague. Exactly what do you want?
Measurable: Quantify your goal. How will you know if you’ve achieved it or not?
Attainable: Be honest with yourself about what you can reasonably accomplish at this point in your life while taking into consideration your current responsibilities.
Realistic: It’s got to be doable, real, and practical.
Time: Associate a time frame with each goal. When should you complete the goal?
The word accountable means to give an account. When someone knows what your goals are, they help hold you accountable. Whether it is someone else trying to reach the same goal as you or just someone you can give the basic idea to, having an accountability partner will give you another added boost to accomplishing your goals.
So, evaluate and reflect. Decide what you want. Be SMART. Have accountability. When you put these four key pieces together, you put yourself in a position of power to catapult toward achieving your goals and the kind of life you desire.