“A dream written down with a date becomes a goal. A goal broken down into steps becomes a plan. A plan backed by action makes your dreams come true.”Greg Reid
If you’re looking to turn your dreams into reality this year (or anytime in the near future!), you’re going to want to utilize the power of goals. Ask any successful person their key to success and they’ll tell you it’s largely in the goal-setting.
So, what are goals and how exactly can they help you to achieve your dreams? Here, you’ll discover everything you need to know.
What Are Goals?
The definition of a goal is a desired result a person wants to accomplish, combined with the effort to achieve it. Goals can be set for every single area of your life and they can be both large and small.
For example, you may want to progress in your current career. This would be your large, overall goal. However, in order to achieve it, there are certain steps you’ll need to take, such as training. These steps can be broken down into smaller goals.
It’s actually really important to make sure you are setting smaller, achievable goals and not just large ones. This is because, in order to achieve any goal that you set, you need to stay motivated.
If the goal is too big, such as progressing in your career or losing weight, it’s going to take a long time to actually achieve it and you won’t see much progress along the way.
However, if you were to break down the goals, you’d accomplish them quickly, boosting your motivation to continue.
Examples of smaller goals include:
- Go for a walk once a week – Main goal: better health
- Sign up for a training course to learn a new skill – Main goal: provide more/better service in your business or career
- Create a checklist to use with clients or as a lead magnet – Main goals: a new way to help clients or build a larger email list
The smaller the goals, the easier you’ll find them to stick to.
“Success is the progressive realization of predetermined, worthwhile, personal goals.”— Paul J. Meyer
Why It’s Important to Set Goals
Goal setting allows you to work towards your dreams. Success does not come easy, but goals help to lighten the load and make things that may have seemed impossible before an actualized reality.
To get more specific though, here are a few reasons why it’s so important to have goals.
Take control of your life
Do you often feel like you have no control over your own life?
It’s easy to lose our way and get caught up in living on auto-pilot. However, goal setting can really help you to take back control over your life.
By setting goals you’re thinking about what you want from life. Instead of just doing what everyone else wants you to do, you’ll be starting to act more upon what you want to achieve.
When you’ve got a list of goals to work towards, it really helps to keep you focused on your dreams.
It’s easy to lose focus when you don’t have a specific goal in mind and you’re just going through the motion’s day upon day. Goals give you a sense of direction, which in turn focuses the mind.
Achieve the best results
It’s pretty tough to get maximum results in life when you don’t have goals to work towards. Did you know that all of the most successful people in the world set goals they look to accomplish?
When you have a list of goals, you’ll find you push yourself harder to achieve them. You are literally taking the first step to achieving your dreams when you create goals in your life.
Keep track of progress
Finally, goals can really help you to measure your progress. You can see just how far you’ve come, as well as how far you still have left to go to achieve them. This, in turn, can really help to keep those motivation levels up.
“Happiness is not a goal…it’s a by-product of a life well lived.”― Eleanor Roosevelt
6 Types of Goals to Set for a Happy Life
Now that you’ve learned the importance of creating goals, it’s time to start actually creating some. If you’re new to goal setting, it can be difficult knowing what type of goals you should set yourself.
You can set goals for all areas of your life. So, to give you a little inspiration, here you’ll discover 6 types of goals you need in life.
We spend most of our lives working, so it makes sense to ensure you’re doing something you actually enjoy. Setting business and study goals are crucial to success.
Think of the top business people in the world―Richard Branson, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos―all of them set goals that they work to achieve.
When thinking about your business goals, consider the type of career you want to have or business you’d like to create. Think about the impact you’d like to have on the world.
Whether you’re in school or taking classes or not, having some goals for learning something new will enrich your life. They could be business-related or just something you want to do as a hobby.
For those of you for are still in school or college, setting goals can also help you to focus more on your studies and help you to achieve better grades. It could also help you create better balance between your school and social life.
Don’t forget that learning and studying are also good to further your career or build a better business. If you don’t have them already, you’ll want to start listing your business or study goals now, so you can work towards success.
“Carve your name on hearts, not tombstones. A legacy is etched into the minds of others and the stories they share about you.”Shannon Alder
Relationships of all kinds require work to keep them strong and healthy. Whether you’re looking to improve your relationship with your spouse, a friend, or with family members, setting goals can really help.
It could be setting a goal to reconnect with your partner via more regular date nights. Or maybe you could make more effort to meet up with friends for coffee?
Think about the different ways your relationships could be made stronger.
If you want to live a long and happy life, you’re going to want to focus on making sure you’re as healthy as possible. It’s easy to neglect our health when we aren’t working towards specific goals.
Your health goals could include anything from cutting down on alcohol, to getting fitter and boosting your immune system. Any steps you can take to boost your health is going to help you achieve a better quality of life.
Don’t forget about your mental health as well as your physical health.
Let’s face it, focusing on finances isn’t exactly fun! At least not all the time.
However, if you don’t get on top of your financial situation, it can have a significantly negative impact on your wellbeing.
Financial goals can include anything from getting out of debt, to saving more or gaining a higher income.
“The key to ultimate happiness and fulfillment lies within our own transformation. The more we learn and grow and evolve as individuals, the more we will find happiness and satisfaction in relationships, work and life.”Kristi Bowman
Personal Growth Goals
Working on personal development really helps you to become a much better, happier person. By improving yourself, it’s going to help you to become much more successful, as well as mentally healthier.
The great thing about personal development is that it never really ends. There are always ways you can improve yourself and develop healthier habits.
Whether you need to increase your willpower, improve your self-esteem and confidence, or improve your communication skills—setting personal development goals can help. This is what Stay Goal’d is all about!
If religion or spirituality is important to you, you’ll want to make sure some of your goal setting is focused on more spiritual goals. Spiritual goals can help you to feel closer to whichever deity you believe in, as well as help you to connect with your inner self.
Even if you’re not religious, you can still set spiritual goals for yourself. The whole purpose of these goals is to help you to connect with your real self and ensure you are following your life’s purpose.
“If you want to live a happy life, tie it to a goal, not to people or things.”Albert Einstein
Examples of Simple Goals to Set in Your Life
Now that you know what types of goals you can set, it’s time for you to start thinking about what goals you’d like to set. If you’re struggling to think of some, don’t worry! This next section is just for you.
Let’s take a look at some examples of large goals you can set and then some smaller goals within them. You could even break down the smaller goals even further to create some baby steps to achieve those goals, but I want to keep it simple for you.
You can use these as inspiration to create your own goals, or you could choose to use them as they are, but make sure it’s something personal to you. Remember that you’re more likely to achieve goals that you set based on your own specific wants or need.
Okay, ready for a little goal inspiration? Here are the examples.
Focus on self-care
Despite how important it is, many people don’t really consider focusing on self-care. Plenty of people focus on being physically healthy, but you should also focus on the health of your mind, as well.
Self-care includes everything from making sure you get some much needed “you” time to learning how to say no to things you don’t want or don’t have the capacity to do.
As entrepreneurs, we’re often so busy working on fulfilling the many roles our business demands, often taking care of clients and customers, that we forget for taking care of ourselves.
Here are just a few examples of self-care goals you could set for yourself:
- Starting a gratitude journal
- Spending time doing a relaxing activity
- Forgiving yourself for bad decisions
- Finding more time for yourself
- Making time to practice a hobby
What other goals can you think of that you could set for your own wellbeing?
“Everything I was I carry with me, everything I will be lies waiting on the road ahead.”Ma Jian, Red Dust: A Path Through China
Travel for fun
I realize that some of us are lucky enough to travel in our businesses but forget about business travel for just a sec. What about traveling just for fun?
Even if you’re not a natural nomad, traveling delivers many great benefits. When you travel, it really broadens the mind and helps you to develop more empathy and compassion.
It can also help you to realize what’s really important in life, giving you a much bigger picture of the world around you.
Some example goals you can set if you’re looking to travel more include:
- Set aside a specific amount of money each month to save for a vacation
- Aim to visit at least one new foreign destination each year
- Explore local destinations once a week
- Experience different methods of travel or transportation
- Plan a cross country road trip
Think about the places you’d love to travel to and how much you can realistically afford to spend on travel this year.
Improve your health
Most of us could do with improving our general health. Whether it’s to get fitter, boost the immune system or develop healthier habits, there’s always something you can focus on to get healthier.
Examples of general health-related goals can include:
- Drink a glass of water as soon as you wake up
- Exercise at least 4 times each week
- Add exercise into your workday breaks
- Try a new healthy recipe each week
- Set a strict bedtime routine to improve sleep
Whichever area of your health you’re hoping to improve, setting goals can really help.
Give more to those around you
Of course, our goals shouldn’t just be all about ourselves. It’s a good idea to aim to give more to those around us. The more you give in life, the more you’re likely to receive.
It’s easy to live an egotistical life, getting caught up in our own lives and dramas. However, there’s a reason giving makes us feel good, and that’s because it’s ultimately at the heart of who we are as human beings.
Some example goals you could set include:
- Compliment a random person
- Be kind to all of the people you meet
- Volunteer at a local charity
- Donate things you don’t use to charity
- Take a friend out to lunch
Giving involves so much more than donating money. So, even if you don’t have the funds to donate to charity, you can still help in many other ways.
Have you set some goals yet?
Now that you know how crucial goals are if you want to turn your dreams into reality, you can now start setting your own. If you haven’t created any goals yet, now is definitely the time to do so.
What types of goals are most important to you?
This is a great place to start when setting goals, whether it’s your first serious attempt or you’re looking to set a new goal.
Set goals in the areas that will make you feel the happiest and fulfilled in your life. Start with some easy or simple ones to get into the practice.
Remember, no matter which type of goal you’re looking to achieve, it should be something specific and personal. It’s important to break each big goal down into small and easily achievable steps.
Good luck with working to achieve your dreams! The more you set goals and achieve them, the easier it will become to keep it up, and the more success and happiness you’ll be able to achieve.