Read any self-improvement book and you will learn that hard work, focused goals, and persistence are important (very important!) in getting to where you want to go in life. Goals or targets are also an important part of managing your time.
In this lesson, you will learn why setting goals is important. We will also introduce you to the SPIRIT acronym, which can help you set solid goals that you are motivated to reach. You will then have an opportunity to set a goal for yourself for after the workshop.
The Dot Exercise
Before you can develop plans, you have to know what you want to accomplish (your goals or targets); how you want to accomplish those goals or targets; what resources of time, money, and materials you have; and who will carry out the implementation. So set some targets for yourself, targets that you can see, and we’ll start the journey to reaching them.
Many of us are full of ideas but short on taking constructive action to put those ideas into play. Maybe we try something once and then meet failure because we didn’t think and plan the actions through. But you know what they say about the lottery: “You can’t win if you don’t buy a ticket.” Well, the same is true in life: if you stop trying, you lose all chance of succeeding. Make a covenant with yourself that you will make an effort to put into practice the things we talk about today that will be of the most benefit to YOU. And to make that covenant even more of a commitment, share it with a colleague, your spouse, or your supervisor.
In this course, we are going to spend a bit of time talking about why you should set goals for yourself, and the best way to do it so that you have a good chance of reaching your goals.
Setting Goals with SPIRIT
Goals and objectives are the basis for planning. As the Cheshire Cat said to Alice, “If you don’t know where you are going, then any road will take you there.” And that is often how we approach life. We just live, and if we end up where we want to be, hey, that’s great. If we end up where we don’t want to be, hey, that’s life.
We can do a bit better than that, if we really want to. The first element in planning is knowing what we want to achieve, and the way we word our goals is the biggest factor in helping us achieve them. Goals should reflect your SPIRIT!
Be specific about what you want or don’t want to achieve. The result should be tangible and measurable. “Look gorgeous” is pretty ambiguous; “Lose 20 pounds” is specific.
Reward yourself at different points in the goal, particularly if it’s long-term. If your goal is to set up a home office, for example, you might purchase a new desk when the room is cleared out and ready.
The goal must be something that you want to do. If your spouse wants you to lose 20 pounds but you think you look fine, you’re not going to want to work towards the goal.
Review your progress periodically. Does the goal make sense? Are you stuck? Do you need to adjust certain parts of it?
Frame the goal positively. Make it fun to accomplish. You could make a poster of the end result, frame it, and post it on the wall.
Give yourself a deadline for achieving the goal. Even better, split the goal into small parts and give yourself a deadline for each item.