January is traditionally a time for go-getters to make resolutions, set goals and create intentions.
But, sadly, according to US News, 80% of those are forgotten by the second week of February.
How can we stay in the awesome 20% who are really going for their dreams?
We all know that time spent on making plans increases our productivity, our direction and our success (and therefore our money), exponentially.
So why don't people do it? Why do they continue to muddle through, taking action sporadically, taking the long way round?
Do you resist setting goals?
I know I used to. I'd heard they were incredibly useful and that they would improve my chances of getting what I wanted 'out of sight'. But somehow I couldn't get round to them.
I would sit, staring at a blank piece of paper, feeling downhearted and overwhelmed.
I didn't know how to go about the process; how to set goals that I could achieve, what time-frame to put on them and then, almost more importantly, how not to abandon them. I could feel myself disappointed and ready to give up.
And I hated doing this on my own, with just my own inner critical voice for company!
It was time to learn about goal-setting, and discover systems, methods, tips, shortcuts and answers to why we resist and how to get over that resistance.
What is Goal-Setting?
The definition of goal setting is the process of identifying something that you want to accomplish and establishing measurable objectives and time-frames in which to complete them.
Why set goals?
Goals trigger ideas and inspiration. They motivate and clarify, and act as a kind of placeholder of what your amazing future could be like.
Also, by declaring them in writing, and especially by sharing them with others, you are 10x more likely to achieve them - they really act as a way of being accountable.
But, and this is a big but, they also throw up a lot of resistance.
Thoughts like 'It's impossible', 'I don't know how to go about achieving these goals' and 'It'll probably be really hard'.
They really get in the way of the joy!
I had to do a lot of EFT or tapping around those until I got to a place where they felt doable.
That and working with somebody else to encourage me not to throw up my hands in despair.
Only then I could get to the 'how' of goal-setting.
How to go about setting them?
Set a time-frame (say, 2018), and decide which areas you would like to focus on improving. (To get you started, think Career, Health, Wealth, Relationships and Spirituality.)
Set a timer (12 minutes per area), and brainstorm what you would like to achieve in each.
My favorite system is using a mind-map, effectively a brain dump for all the ideas you have around a particular area.
These ideas can then be used to create a One-Year Plan, which you complete with action steps, or as I like to call them, 'likely actions', which you will follow.
One tried and true system is to work backwards.
So for a year long goal: divide a sheet of paper into 6 columns, put your goals in the final column, and divide the 4 middle columns into the 4 trimesters. What would you like to have achieved in each to move you towards the final objective?
The great painter Pablo Picasso once said:
"Our goals can only be reached through a vehicle of a plan, in which we must fervently believe, and upon which we must vigorously act. There is no other route to success.”
And so I hope the ideas and resources in this article will assist you in taking the first step!