Dating start with goal setting
I think a large part of this is due to not having realistic goals – without something to shoot towards, it’s easy to get discouraged and give up. Studies and surveys have shown that you are far more likely to achieve your goals if you write it down.It’s hard enough to make changes in our life and accomplish what we desire – if your goal is unrealistic, or not well defined, then you’re starting out with an immediate handicap. I personally like to write my goals down and refer to them daily to keep them at the front of my mind.Going along with the above of setting short term mile stones, even if your long term goal is “get in better shape” – you can still be specific such as “be in good enough shape to play football for two hours twice a week.” The more specific you are, the better motivated you’ll be as you get closer to achieving your goal.With vague goals, it’s very easy to get discouraged, because you may not feel like you’re getting closer to due to having no clear end in sight.One of the most sobering goal setting statistics I learned in my research on setting New Year’s resolutions was that 25% of resolutions were broken in the first week.And the odds didn’t get much better for the first couple months – among gym goers, 80% drop out within eight weeks.Writing down our goals also helps make them real to us.
Additional ways to know if your goal is realistic is to determine if you have accomplished anything similar in the past or ask yourself what conditions would have to exist to accomplish this goal.
When we write it down however, the very act of writing helps us commit to the goals – and also gives us something we can visually see and reflect on.
For more about written goals, see the article I wrote about a written goal setting study – and it wasn’t done at Yale or Harvard.
Goals that are far out of reach are easy to procrastinate on and put off.
It’s fine to have long term dreams – but in the short run, you should have regular mile stones as well.Use specific, tangible words in your goals such as measurements and (if applicable) a date by which they will be accomplished.