By: Sahana Golla, Ultimate Spark! Coaching Junior Coach
“The key to success is to focus on goals, not obstacles.”
We’ve all been in that place before. You know what I am talking about; it’s New Year’s Day, and you are so hopeful that you are setting all these goals for yourself, like going to the gym 5 times a week or losing 30 pounds, but when it really comes down to it, these tasks are seemingly insurmountable. You might get a gym membership or subscribe to a new diet plan, but are you really going to accomplish those goals of yours? No, you are not! I hate to be a naysayer, but you are going to have to do better than that if you want to accomplish your grandiose dreams and visions. Those are just dreams! Goals should be set plans that you can take action on. They should be definitive and in line with your true life purpose. They should not just focus on one area of your life, and they should be well thought out and dreamt up? I know what you are thinking. Way to be a hater! Can I not accomplish my dreams and hopes, then? Are you telling me all that time I spent in the shower daydreaming was just me fantasizing? And I am here to tell you, “NO!” There is a proper way to set, plan, and take action on your goals and lucky for you, I happen to know just the way.
1. Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals. You might be thinking now… I am not smart; I scored a 50% on my last calculus test. And I am here to say, “Yes, you are!” All you have to do is follow the guidelines for setting goals, and you will be acing your calculus exams in no time. S.M.A.R.T. is an acronym which stands for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. Let’s break it down, shall we? Setting a specific goal means choosing a goal that is precise and clear. There should be no doubt in your mind as to what the goal encompasses. Attainable means the goal should be something you can realistically accomplish. Anything you set your mind to, you can accomplish! Pick wisely, though. Relevant goals are ones which pertain to you and you only, will help you to be a more successful individual in many aspects of your life. Finally, time-bound means you have set a firm date by which you must accomplish these goals. Doing this ensures that you will take action on your goals right away, rather than procrastinating. Additionally, if you want to take deadlines a step further for long-term goals, you may want to set sub-deadlines, too so that you will stay on track for your final due date or deadline.
2. Set goals in multiple aspects of life. This is your personal growth and development journey. Pick goals that will obviously be beneficial to your overall well-being and will help you grow and develop as a person, but this does not have to be limited to the area of health as some might think. To become an overall more successful person, you should set goals in other areas of your life, such as the following: spiritual/religious, personal growth, relationships, fun and recreation, money, career and business, and family. Setting multiple goals will not only make you a better person overall, but it will add more spice and zest to the quality of your life and make it more enjoyable.
3. Break it down and schedule them in your daily planner or to-do-list. Once you have brainstormed and mind mapped your goals out onto a physical piece of paper or a digital notepad, pick your top three goals from each category. Then, break them down further into 1-5 actionable steps you can take daily and prioritize and record them separately in your day-to-day digital or physical planner, to-do-list, or calendar. Whatever works best for you.
4. Visualize accomplishing your goals. You know how the old saying goes, “Seeing is believing.” In this case, it is true. Visualization is a very important aspect of achieving your goals. If the top professional athletes across multiple sports do it, then why shouldn’t you do it too? Some athletes who practice the art of visualization include the following: Roger Federer, Michael Jordan, Tom Brady, and Michael Phelps. Create a visual image in your head of the shot you are going to take, the stroke you are going to hit, the swing you will hit. After that, visualize the outcome it will have. Now you will be fully prepared and awakened to your dreams as they will overtake you as you feel them, breathe them in, live them!
5. Reflect and celebrate. Knowing is half the battle; doing is the other half. Once you have achieved your goals, you are on your way to success. For example, one of my goals for the year was to obtain clear skin, and I achieved it. Congratulations! You did it! Take the time to pat yourself on the back and celebrate. Maybe even throw a party! I am so proud of you! The last step to take is to review your goals and the steps you took to accomplish them. Think about and make sure to write down what was difficult, what you did well, and any obstacles along the way that popped up. Then, set new goals and repeat steps 1-5!
Setting goals is the key to success in every area of your life. With these tips, you are now fully ready to go out and pursue your dreams and visions! I wish the best of luck and much happiness and prosperity along your journey to accomplishing your grandiose dreams and visions! One piece of advice before you go, though: Don’t be like Gatsby from The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. Make sure your dreams are true to who you are and that you remain honest with yourself and others. Until next time, I wish you are able to further your life in all possible ways!
~ Sahana Golla