Setting goals are probably one of the most important things you have to do before you start to work on anything.
Without a goal, you don’t have a vision, and without a vision, well let’s just say that a lot can go wrong if you don’t have a vision. Click here to read: Why You Need to Have a Vision in Life.
Without a goal you will feel lost, you will feel unmotivated and uninspired to work and chase your dreams. Some people might be the opposite though, for example, I spent about 2 months working on something every single day and then I realized one day I don’t even know what I’m working towards and why I’m working.
I figured out I’ve must been operating in autopilot for over 2 months, absolutely crazy.
Why is goal setting important?
Goal setting is not only important for staying motivated and inspired to work though, it’s important because having a goal will help you with decision making. In life you’re always presented with decisions. Every single day you are presented with a ton of different decision and if you don’t have a goal or a vision for the future, then there’s a big chance that your decisions will actually prevent you from reaching that goal, instead they’ll make your goals even more out of reach.
Decisions are important and sometimes hard, but by having a clear vision and clearly set goals, decisions become effortless, because you know exactly what you need to do to get what you desire, at all times.
Goal setting can sometimes be hard though, I totally know what you feel when you think about setting goals for yourself and writing them out.
We often set goals that make us confused:
We often feel confused about setting our own goals, because we are used to ALWAYS hearing about these crazy goals that people accomplished and how we ALWAYS have to set the biggest goals and all that, while that can work to some extent, you first have to know what you’re capable off and if you’re not sure about what you’re capable off, well then you’ll be scared and confused about goal setting.
That’s exactly what happened to me and here’s a process that I followed to set goals I honestly believe I can achieve and I also set daily steps that will allow me to achieve them if followed like planed.
I based this goal setting exercise on a well-known strategy that Gary Vaynerchuck talks about in one of his books: AskGaryVee, called reverse engineering. I did modify it a little bit, but at the end of the day, it’s still a similar process.
Make it specific, work backwards.
So I took 3 pieces of paper I laid them down in front of me and I thought to myself, what do I really desire, what do I want to achieve and how do I want to live.
Essentially I asked myself what do I want my life to look like 3 months from now (February 15th at the time of writing this), so I wrote down the date: May 15th, 2018 and I started writing.
I wrote down every single thing that I honestly believed I could achieve by working on it for 3 months every single day, I didn’t set my goals short, but I did make sure my mind agreed with them to some extent and it didn’t freak out completely and immediately say: that’s impossible.
Making sure that you’re mind is semi-comfortable with your 3-month goals is essential, because when you set unrealistic goals for yourself and you give yourself 3 months, you’re basically performing self-sabotage.
After you write down everything that you want to achieve in those next 3 months, take a new piece of paper and write down a date exactly 6 months from now. For me, that was August 15th, 2018.
Next look at ALL the goals that you’ve set for yourself on the previous paper and multiply them by 2 or whatever feels comfortable. I find that multiplying them by 2 works really well as your mind will be adapted to those new goals by that time.
Finally, take the 3rd piece of paper and write down a date exactly 12 months / a year from now. And once again multiply those 6-month goals by 2 or even 3 if you’re feeling confident.
Once you’ve done that, go back to the first piece of paper where you wrote down your 3-month goals and now work backwards or as Gary would call it, reverse engineer. Ask yourself what do I need to do/have to get there in 3 months, figure it out, it’s not that hard.
Once you do, try to divide what you have to do by 90 days, make it part of your daily routine.
Time is an advantage, not a disadvantage.
For example if you want to get in better shape and lose weight, make it part of your daily routine to go on a 30-45min run every single day. Make it part of your routine, but make sure you start slow so your brain doesn’t freak out. Then overtime increase the duration.
What breaking down your already REALISTIC goals into tiny steps that you can take every single day will do, is that it will allow you to not get scared about how you’re going to achieve that goal, but you’re going to take advantage of the time and patience and you’re going to let time do all the work for you.
Remember, consistency is key here. Every single day counts, so make sure to stay disciplined and spend the 30minutes or however long it takes every single day to work on your desire and over the course of 3 months I promise that you’ll achieve it.
You’ll achieve it for 2 reasons:
- You made it realistic and you believed you can actually achieve it.
- You took advantage of the compound effect and time while being patient and putting in the work.
The compound effect really is amazing, it works with anything in everything, little by little, day by day and you can build a whole castle. 😉
Regarding the 6-month and 12-month goals.
Once the first 3 months are up, take a new piece of paper and take a look at your 6-month goals, which are now actually your 3-month goals.
Take a look at the goals you set and ask yourself how far away from them are you.
If you feel like you’re far away from them, adjust them and make them more realistic.
If you are really close or if you’ve already achieved them, raise them, but make sure they’re still realistic and don’t feel out of reach.
Then just repeat the whole process again and set yourself small daily steps that will add up over time. Reverse engineer. 😉
Hope you found this helpful.
Thanks for reading.
Until next time,
- Benjamin 🙂