I’m a big fan of goals. I’ve made annual goals since 2005 and monthly goals since 2010. I have never achieved all the goals on any one annual list and the times when I’ve achieved all my monthly goals have been few and far between. Strangely enough, that has not reduced my enthusiasm for goal-making. It has simply made me review how I set goals. One of the reasons I think I haven’t lost enthusiasm for goal-making is that even though I hardly ever attain all my goals, the ones I do achieve seem to take me that much closer to the life I want to live.
Once again, at the beginning of this year, I decided to review the way I set goals. The standard advice one is given is to set S.M.A.R.T. goals meaning goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-bound. I think I’ve always had problems with the attainable and realistic parts because I don’t want to set goals that I know I will achieve easily yet I don’t know what is unattainable or unrealistic. If I made N100,000 from writing in one year, is it realistic for me to set a target of N200,000 for the following year? Is that an attainable goal? I don’t know but I found that personally, S.M.A.R.T. goal-setting feels cold and doesn’t work for me so at the beginning of this year, I looked at the goals I had set in the past and tried to adjust my strategy.
I put less pressure on myself when deciding what I want to achieve and I also decided to set fewer goals. At about the same time, I came across a blog post that advised that when you want to set annual goals, you should ask yourself this question: “What one thing do I want to have achieved by the end of this year?” When you decide that, consider that your main goal then ask yourself what next you would most want to achieve by the end of the year. Once you’ve done that, you’ll have two main goals driving you and can set monthly goals to help you achieve your two goals for the year.
I set more than two goals this year but I do have two main goals and before I take any action, I ask if that goal will take me closer to my goals. By this time next year, I hope to be telling you that my new goal-setting strategy worked so watch this space!
Do you have a goal-setting technique? What are your goals for this year?
Want to know when a new blog post of mine comes up? All you need to do is subscribe to my blog. It’s free! Just enter your email address into the box on the right. Want to get in touch with me? You can do so via Facebook or Twitter or by sending me an email.