Friday, January 2, 2009

Goal Setting Exercise



Guest Blogger: Tim Northburg

Use a blank piece of paper, list out your goals in each area. Start every one with positive, “I WILL . . .” statements. Be as specific as you can and list out a time-frame for the completion of it.

Here are some thought starters in each goal unit:
(X= Insert what you want there.)

1. Personal Growth (Knowledge):
I will take a course at a college/university/community college . . .
I will read books about (a particular area of interest) . . .
I will find a mentor . . .
I will learn a foreign language . . .

2. Health (Fitness):
I will change my eating habits and/or start a weight loss plan . . .
I will join a gym and go 3 times per week for ½ an hour each day . . .
I will take a spin class at the gym . . .
I will roller-blade, ski, golf . . .
I will watch less TV and do a physical activity outside . . .

3. Income (Financial Stability):
I will make $X this year . . .
I will save $X this year . . .
I will put aside $X this year for my child/s future/schooling . . .
I will pay off X bills . . .
I will find a better paying job that will pay $X . . .

4. Career (Work Environment):
I will accomplish X this year . . .
I will learn more about X this year . . .
I will handle my stress and not show it at work . . .
I will be a fair boss . . .
I will say only positive things at work . . .
I will stay out of gossip rings/stay away from negative people . . .

5. Social Life (Friends, Fun or Recreation):
I will take a vacation to X . . .
I will take up X as a hobby . . .
I will join X social group . . .
I will find an old friend from the past and re-connect . . .
I will overcome my fear of X (fear of water and take swimming lessons) . . .

6. Relationships (Significant Other or Romance):
I will find a girlfriend/boyfriend . . .
I will have a better relationship with my (significant other) . . .
I will appreciate my (significant other) and surprise them randomly with (gift, card, post-it
note, single rose, flowers or chocolate) . . .

7. Belief (Higher Power or Self):
I will take a course in meditation . . .
I will attend/join church or civic organization . . .
I will open up my thinking to others beliefs . . .
I will think and be positive . . .
I will expand my comfort zone in X area (Public speaking) . . .
I will increase my confidence in X . . .

8. Family (Relatives or Associative Family):
I will make a new close friend . . .
I will talk to my parents more . . .
I will show I appreciate my children more and praise them more often . . . .
I will spend more time with my friends . . .


DON’T FORGET TO:

Set a deadline for achieving each of your goals: A time frame for completing your goal give you an absolute beginning and end to the goal. Even if you don’t hit it by the time you set you can modify the goal and extend the time. By not setting a time frame you will most likely keep putting it off.

Set your goals high, but be realistic: If you write a goal down that is too unrealistic then you will not work towards it. For example: “I will run for president in the next election.” This is a good goal! However, unless you are a prominent government official it might be a little far fetched to accomplish. A great goal might be: “I will run for my local city Council for the next election, then run for State Senator in two years and then in eight years I will run for President.” This goal gives a clear short, intermediate and long term plan with a time frame. Your goal for President may be high but you are also shooting for the steps in-between.

Set stretch goals: A stretch goal is one that stretches past the realm of current possibility. Here is an example of a goal: “I will find a Literary Agent and a publisher for my 387 page Fantasy Fiction by the end of June this year.” Here is a stretch goal: “I will attract the sight of a major motion picture company and get a 3.5 million dollar movie contract by August this year.” The first goal is a possibility. The second goal stretches the imagination—might be possible if the first happens and the book is outstanding.

Keep them in front of you and look at them daily—out of sight out of mind! Keep them in ‘Top of mind awareness’ to that your consciousness is consistently striving towards those goals. It keeps you motivated. When you are working towards your goals it is uncanny how things just pop up. You might meet that contact you needed to get that job, or bump into someone who knows that agent that is looking for a good fantasy novel. If all you do is wish to win the lottery but never buy a ticket—how do you expect to win?

Cross it out when you accomplish it: Track the goals you accomplish. You will be surprised at the end of the year how many of them you will have crossed off. I have been doing this for over twelve years and every time I am amazed at how many goals I have crossed off at the end of the year.

Reward yourself when you achieve a goal: Give yourself some praise when you hit a goal. For the small goals I give myself a bottle of wine. The larger goals I give myself a music CD or a DVD. Reward yourself for doing a good job. It keeps the motivation going to hit the other goals.

Set new goals: Things change. If you have new motivations, dreams, desires, hopes and wishes write down new goals. The New Year is not the only time to set goals.

Happy goal setting! You can reach what you desire just lay it out in front of yourself and go for it!

YOU CAN DO IT!

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Tim Northburg is a Sales Manager at Saturn of Fort Collins. He has been in Sales and Management for over fifteen years and has experience coaching, mentoring and training highly successful sales people. He is also a writer and has developed five training guidebooks for his field and is currently working on several ficiton projects. Check out his fiction project at www.BaconsQuest.com
Find Tim's goal setting workbook at: http://www.lulu.com/content/1641296

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