Defining your personal goals in life is a big achievement in itself. However goals are not just there to sit in your journal or even pinned to the wall to look at when you get a spare minute. Goals are there as a destination which needs to be worked towards as your life progresses, and you are the driver in charge of the transport which will get you along that journey. So, having decided what your goal is, the next stage is to take an assertive path towards setting out how you will achieve it.

Do you hope to be one of the top international sales managers in your product line? Is your goal to one day run your own company? Do you have a goal of retiring early and being able to travel around the world? Whatever your goal is, there will be set amount of things you will need to do before achieving it. So where do you start?

1. Make the goal as tight and specific as possible.

Specific goals are more achievable than ones with “loose” edges.

In the early retirement scenario this could mean putting an age into the pot, so that the goal would be “I want to retire at the age of 50 and travel around the world.”

2. Identify the things that are essential to have before your goal can be achieved.

Self managing your goal achievement means taking control of the situation and not sitting back hoping it will just happen. Take time to consider exactly what you need to have in order to be in a position to achieve your goal.

Continuing the retiring early to travel scenario, this would mean that you have made enough money to fully pay up a retirement fund which will allow you to live out the rest of your life without worrying about paying the bills, plus having a savings fund to cover the cost of your travels. It also means that you do some research so that you know where you want to go and what you want to see of the world.

3. Take each of the steps and break it down into smaller achievable mini goals.

The steps applicable to the scenario in this article would be:

* Make an appointment with an independent financial adviser and discuss your goal with him. Ask what financial options are open to you to get an optimal retirement fund build up that will help you reach your goal in the time frame you have available.

* Start making payments into whichever retirement plan is decided to give you the best return.

* Open a special bank account which will give you a good rate of interest on your savings and commit to putting a set amount of money into this account each month.

* Consult with your financial advisor on an annual basis if the retirement plan is remains the best one for your situation or whether there is now a better option.

* Build a library of travel books that cover the areas you wish to visit.

* Would having a second language help in your travels? Investigate taking language training in French, Spanish or whichever language will help you get the most out of your traveling experience.

4. Get started on the personal goal achievement journey!

Put a note in your schedule to start the first task on the mini goal list on a specific day. Write down exactly what you will do on that day, and stick to it! Once you have one mini goal achieved, move on and schedule a date for the next one.

Make that appointment with the independent financial advisor.

5. Annual Review

Make a note each year, perhaps on your birthday, to review your goal and the steps that are taking you there. See how far you have traveled towards it, change any of the remaining steps in light of any new circumstances. The review process is an essential part of self managing your way to personal goal achievement because over time situations and desires change and your life goals need to reflect these changes.

You have moved positions and now have more money at your disposal and can increase your monthly savings.

With a proactive approach you will have the satisfaction of knowing you are journeying in the right direction towards goal achievement.

Katie-Anne Gustafsson spent many years in business administration before becoming a WAHM where she learned many of the organisational skills and tools she needs to effectively balance the demands for her daily life.

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