A Goal is a Dream with a Deadline
Now that you’ve established the most important of the dreams you wish to see come true, and identified the categories, from the LifeWheels for which you want to see dramatically improved results, it’s time to commit to some goals.
You’ll find below our proven goal planning sheet as well as the thought behind it. The most important part of a goal is being able to state what it is in a way that makes it clear that your goal is S.M.A.R.T.
It’s Specific – It’s not “lose weight” it’s “lose 15 pounds.”
It’s Measurable – The goal has something easy to measure or assess, “I want to save $100 each month”
It’s Achievable – It can be attained, albeit with some stretching perhaps. If you’re 4’9″ and have a goal to play basketball in the NBA you may find that goal is frustrating. While it’s important to rely on your goals to push you out of your comfort zone and develop your body, mind, organization and colleagues, it must be possible or your wasting your time.
It’s Results oriented – Your goal will directly attain the results you’ve identified in your goal categories and dream inventory.
After defining what your goal is the next step on our sheet is identifying why the goal is worth pursuing and completing and why failing to do so is not an option. For both the Rewards and Consequences section you must identify:
- A rational reason to attain it. This could be dollars and cents of gain, or any “score” by which you can easily measure (10% growth, $10000 more salary, etc). We call this the “Dollar Reward”
- An emotional reason that will get you motivated to attain it. We call this the “Heart Reward”
Consequences should not just be the inverse of the rewards…no, that’s too easy. Identifying how your life will suck if you don’t get this done will lead to the Heart Consequence and the Dollar Consequence that is so abhorrent to you that you’ll risk discomfort, stress, even change your life to ensure you these are consequences you don’t face. Scientific studies reflect that the majority (60-80% depending upon which study you read) of us are more motivated to avoid consequences than to seek reward.
It’s not an engagement without a wedding date and it’s not a goal without a deadline. In keeping with the SMART guidelines above set a target date that is both realistic and a little difficult to meet.
Add the date you filled out the goal planning sheet. You may revise your goals, your dreams and the results you desire. Knowing what you were thinking was important and when will serve you well.
Next include three affirmations. Three abilities or qualities you possess (or those to which you’ll delegate) that assure you that this is a goal you can achieve. We have a different take on affirmations from many, based upon recent research in how the brain responds to positive self talk. You see, statements like I am a great salesman or I am beautiful don’t work as well as asking “Why am I a great salesman?” or “What makes me beautiful?”. Enter in the lines provided your best affirming answers to your insightful questions.
Next it’s time to ask yourself, if this goal is important to me, why don’t I already have it? There are obstacles, challenges, things to overcome between you now and the you that will celebrate the completion of this goal. What are they? What are the steps required to overcome them? Will you need or can you get help from anyone? Lastly, when will these steps be able to be complete? Is that in keeping with your target for the goal? Often there are more than one set of solutions to a given obstacle so we’ve included lots of space to work those all out.
The Goal Planning Sheet has even been laid out for you to complete in the correct order for preparing your mind to attain the goal. After identifying the goal you’ll go right to the “why” before anything else and then the listing of your affirmations will further buttress your motivation and excitement before you ever begin thinking about the obstacles. So many of us think of what’s in the way before we remember and commit to our ability to overcome them. Hence, the “zen” of the Goal Planning Sheet.
Test your knowledge of the Goal Planning Sheet with our Goal Race exercise.