Setting and achieving goals do come with a lot of responsibilities, but this does not mean that they have to be unnecessarily stressful. Too much stress can impact your physical and mental health. It can reduce your productivity and stop your growth. If you want to avoid stress while you strive to achieve your goals, then the way you set your goals matters a lot.
From setting your goals to achieving them, the following are some proven steps that will help you achieve unprecedented success and still minimize stress.
1. Leverage the Power of Imagination
Leveraging the power of your imagination in this context means using mind pictures to think about areas of your life, where you want to be, and what goals you should set to get there. Being confused about which goals to set can lead to setting the wrong goals, and pursuing the wrong goals can lead to wasted time and frustration.
However, when you take quality time out to set your goals using the power of thoughtfulness and imagination, you will be able to identify the things that are important for you to accomplish. Therefore, when you decide you want to set your goals, find an environment that can inspire you and boost your creative and imaginative power.
2. Align Your Goals With Your Purpose
Several studies have pointed out that people tend to get to achieve their goals when those goals have roots in their life purpose. A life purpose is something that your entire life is designed to achieve. It is the thing that drives and motivates you to get out of bed every day and hit the ground running.
If you have not yet identified the purpose of your life, then your first priority is to discover that purpose.
When you have discovered your purpose, then align your goals with the purpose. Your personal, career, financial, and family goals, etc. should actually stem out of your purpose. Everything should fit into the ultimate agenda for your life.
It’s just like building a house. Every unit is placed together to bring out the beauty of a masterpiece called a building.
3. Prioritize Your Goals and Focus on One Goal
Because of natural human limitations, no one can effectively achieve multiple goals at a time. This is why it is important to prioritize your goals.
Start with writing a list of goals that you want to accomplish. Write out everything that you think is important to you. Then, rank each goal based on how important they are to the next stage of your life purpose and plan. Arrange them in order of rank and importance and focus on one goal at a time. When you have achieved one, you can move on to the next goal on your list.
4. Make Your Goal SMART
After picking a goal you want to work on, the next thing is to make it SMART. This means that the goal should be stated in Specific terms, with clear objectives that are Measurable and within Attainable range. It must also be Realistic, not just something premised only on hope. All these should be within a Timeframe that will align with your life’s progress.
Knowing how to set SMART Goals will help you get the job done as you get a clear-cut direction on your goals.
5. Break Down Your Goal Into Milestones
Achieving your goal will be significantly easier if you learn to focus on smaller units of the goal rather than the whole goal itself. This means that you can break down your goals into smaller units that you can complete in the short-term.
For example, if you have the goal to self publish a book in a year, you can break your goal into milestones to make it achievable. This includes activities like creating and researching your book idea, creating the outlines, researching the potential content, writing the manuscript, getting someone to edit it, peer review and endorsements, graphics design, publishing and marketing, etc..
Each of your milestones should have a timeframe within which they should be completed.
6. Develop an Action Plan
Your action plan has to do with the strategy and tactics you put in place, and the series of tasks you will have to execute to achieve your goal. You will need all these if you don’t want to get stuck while striving to achieve your goal.
You can develop more than one action plan or have alternative plans apart from your main plan. You can concentrate on implementing the main plan and only use the alternative plans when the need arises.
Your plans can fail while pursuing your goal, and this doesn’t necessarily mean you have to change it. You can be flexible with your methods and strategies instead of changing or giving up on your goal. Always be creative in finding new ways to mitigate the challenges you may encounter along the way.
7. Keep Yourself on Track
Among other things that are required to achieve your goals, maintaining focus and keeping yourself on track is very important. Make use of all the available resources around you to ensure that you are constantly on the path of achieving your goal. Below are some useful ideas:
Create the Right Environment
Being in the right state of mind and in the right physical environment are essential to achieving your goals. You need to be in a place and around people that will inspire you and support your dreams. This also includes making time for your goals, a time free from other distractions.
Make Use of Motivational Techniques for Optimum Performance
Whatever you set out to achieve, you will need to get motivated for optimum performance. There are different motivational techniques that you can adopt for this. An example is having a vision board, a collection of images and text that points in the direction of your goal and motivates you to take action every day. You can also have a collection of texts and quotes written by you or someone else and use them as affirmative words to speak positively about achieving your goals.
Ask Someone to Help You Be Accountable
Another way to keep yourself on track to achieve your goals is to have someone to be accountable for you. This person is someone who believes in your dream and is happy to see you achieve your goals.
To start, share your goals, plans, and your timeline with the person. Then, have a regular schedule of discussing your progress with the person.
Celebrate Small Wins
Success, they say, begets success. If you win small, you have the tendency to win big. One of the ways to keep focused and stay motivated is by celebrating small wins and rewards.
First, you have to learn to identify the small wins. This can be the completion of a task or a milestone. Do not wait until you win big to applaud yourself. Celebrate the small wins and it will inspire you to do something greater and better.
The goal of this article is to show you that you can set and achieve your goals without going through the stress that most people go through. By carefully choosing your goals and aligning them with your life purpose, focusing on one goal at a time, and making it SMART, you will be on the right track towards achieving your goals.
In addition, working on milestones that create short term rewards will keep you on track and motivated to achieve your bigger goal. Lastly, when you encounter difficulties while working to achieve your goal, try changing your action plans instead of up giving up on your goal.
More Tips on Achieving Goals
- How to Stay Motivated and Reach Your Big Goals in Life
- 6 Golden Rules to Make Progress Towards Achieving Goals
- How to Achieve Goals and Increase Your Chance of Success
Featured photo credit: Estée Janssens via unsplash.com
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