Setting Successful Goals

The beginning of a New Year certainly motivates many people to set and accomplish new goals. In fact, Forbes magazine estimates that more than 40% of Americans make New Year’s resolutions yet only about 8% actually achieve their goals. Regardless if it is the start of a New Year or not, learning tips on how to set successful goals will increase your likelihood of success.

  1. Set Goals that Motivate You:
    • Set goals that are important to you.
    • Set goals for that which you are highly motivated to accomplish.
    • Set goals that are a high priority to you, creating a sense of urgency.
  1. Set SMART Goals
    • Specific: Set goals that are clear, well defined, and not generalized or vague.
    • Measurable: Set goals that include precise amounts, dates, etc. to measure success.
    • Attainable: Set goals that aren’t too easy or too hard.
    • Relevant: Set goals that are focused on what you want to happen in your life.
    • Time Bound: Set goals with a deadline to increase a sense of urgency and achievement.
  1. Set Goals in Writing
    • Set goals and then actually write them down.
    • Set goals using the word “will” instead of “would like to” "might" or "try".
  1. Make an Action Plan
    • Set goals that have an action plan included that will help you track your progress.

*An action plan is a detailed list of steps you are going to take to reach your goal.This action plan should include when, where, how, etc.

  1. Stick With It!
    • Set goals with the mindset that this is not the means to an end and that you are going to maintain this change.
    • Set goals with the mindset that you will continually review them.
    • Set goals with the intent to maintain them over time.

Remember to set goals of various categories such as: spiritual, health, social, financial, family, nutrition, and fitness. When you keep these tips in mind as you set your goals you will definitely notice an increase in your success in achieving what you desire to accomplish.

It is also important to remember to set goals while using a positive perspective.  Instead of creating a list of "do not's", decide that you are going to "do" more.  For example: don't say "I am going to eat less candy" say "I am going to focus on eating healthier and include more fruits and vegetables". This will increase your likelihood of sticking to your goals and will prevent your chances of becoming discouraged. 

“I am so thoroughly convinced that if we don’t set goals in our life and learn how to master the techniques of living to reach our goals, we can reach a ripe old age and look back on our life only to see that we reached but a small part of our full potential.  When one learns to master the principles of setting a goal, he will then be able to make a great difference in the results he attains in this life.”  - M. Russell Ballard



 Golden Rules of Goal Setting