Everybody needs life goals, something to chase and a meaning to life. It is around this time of the year that most people are caught in the “resolution fever”. And whether it is the beginning of a successful year to be, all in measured by what is set and the determination to keep the promise till the end.
For many people, a new year is a fresh start, a do-over of sorts, which motivates one to try something new or to recommit to those tasks you had put on hold. When one talks about the New Year, what often comes to mind is resolutions. And when people make resolutions, they shoot for the moon, promising to be running every morning, eat healthy or quit drinking. Inevitably, three weeks later, they find themselves right back where they started. What could be the reason?
Life coach and the manager of Focus Consulting, Kahoo Kandjoze says that instead of making resolutions, setting measurable goals is more likely to lead to success in seeing one’s hopes and dreams come to fruition. Resolutions turn to be short lived, whereas goals are better because they are time bound, specific and measurable which is important. In addition, goals stem from one’s dream and is very closely connected. “Most important we set goals because we have a dream that we want to fulfill in our life time, which if aligned will enable one to grow, reach higher potential and live with a purpose,” she says.
“Goals are the smaller steps to developing one’s dream. Everyone in life has a dream and our dreams are like a blue print of our purpose and our potential,” she explains. She further states that people have dreams because they have a greater purpose to fulfill and for one to achieve their dream they will need to decide how they will go about achieving those dreams. This is when they set small goals which are like mini steps towards achieving their dream. “Goals should take you closer to achieving your dream,” she says.
How often should one set goals?
One should have a goal for everyday. Kahoo says that everyone must have a goal on a daily basis keeping in mind that they are simple, specific and attainable. “Ask yourself, what do I want to achieve today, what do I want to achieve this month, what do I want to achieve this quarter and finally what do I want to achieve this year?”
She advises that when people set out their goals at the beginning of the year they first have to consider their end goal. One also has to think of their life in totality because life is a wheel. “We have different aspects that we need to attain in our lives like for instance health, finances, career, spiritual development, personal development or what we want to achieve in the area of social development. Individuals then has to consider diligently what they want to do in each area and by when. This enables people to keep track of their goals as time goes knowing exactly what they would have done or what they will be doing for each of those aspects. During the first quarter or first half of the year you can evaluate and say well, I can tick this and that because I have achieved those little goals,” says Kahoo. It is however, important that goals are evaluated against the S.M.A.R.T ideology which means that they have to be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely.
The importance of goals to one’s life…
Kahoo explains that goals are very important because they help people to be better than they were before. “It inspires people from within to have goals and they provide internal motivation to life. If a person is motivated they are bound to live a fulfilled life and they are likely to live their potential to the fullest.”
Most people’s goals fail after a relatively short period of time and become a distant memory before the year is in full swing. This is because people set goals which are too vague and unrealistic. Kahoo says that most people fail to attain their goals because they have not considered the goals in relation to what they exactly want to achieve, they simply just pick goals in a random fashion. Some people only choose goals because their friends have picked them and they do not match their dreams nor do they excite them.
Keep intact with your goals
To ensure that you keep track of your goals you need to have a plan. According to the performance coach, people have to sit down and really consider their dreams and the steps that they’ll need to take to reach their dreams. “You need to sit down and consider all the aspects and draw up your goals in relation with that.”
“You map up what you will be doing from January to December and those will be your goals. Think about your finances and plan what you will do to attain what you want. “Write down your plans and have visuals such as pictures and key words that will sort of give you a stimulus because a mind is stimulated by what it sees and it makes an imprint in one’s mind. That way it keeps reminding you of what you have to get and in that way it helps you to attain what you desire. Therefore, a visual board and some visuals are part of ones planning and it is very important, advises Kahoo.
In most cases, you would need people around you to help you accomplish your goal and hold you accountable. You have to enlist someone else, a friend or a family member just to help you achieve it because that is how nature is – we rely on other people to achieve our goals. If you have shared your goal with a colleague or your mother, chances are that person will be asking you how far you are with your goal which also helps you to keep in track.
Kahoo says that it is also very important to set goals that excite you, goals that will keep you going because if you are not passionate about your goals you will not be motivated. Some people often fail in executing their goals because they make the mistake to make them too easy; so easy that they attain them so quickly which cause people to have fewer goals. “Basically it does not stretch you, you remain in your comfort zone always because you have set for yourself easy goals that you can achieve any way. A goal should challenge you and it should come from a dream that is big enough. Bigger than you so that it challenges you.”
“No one ever accomplishes anything of consequence without a goal…Goal setting is the strongest human force for self- motivation.” Paul Myer