Sunday, December 7, 2014

The Path to Success: Setting and Achieving SMART Goals (3/3)

The Path to Success: Setting and Achieving Goals.

Part (3/3)

This is part two of the series, "The Path to Success: Setting and Achieving Goals" by Robert Leavitt.

Goal Setting

Short Term, Medium Term, and Long Term Goals

There are three basic time periods for goal setting. When you are first starting out, go ahead and define some long term goals first. Imagine yourself 25, 30 or even 50 years from now. What is your life like? What kinds of things do you own? Are you married? Do you have children?

The reason to start with some longer term goals, is that it will make it easier for you to define medium and long term goals after. Once you have some long term goals in place, you can start creating short and medium term goals that are designed with the longer term goals in mind.
Goals often consist of many steps. The most important thing to remember about goals is that you really do need a plan. Your plan could be simple and consist only of onc sentence (as long as it follows the SMART outline), or it can be very complicated, taking up several pages of instructions. The beautiful thing about goals, is that they are yours. There are no steadfast rules, you can adjust your goals, or adjust your plan as you see fit. Try to avoid constantly changing your goals, because there does have to reach a point where you actually finish with the project. Without finishing the project, you will never feel the sense of accomplishment that it can provide. This is a very important step in building your character and confidence.

Here are some examples of long term, medium term and short term goals

Long Term
By the age of 50 I will own a 4 bedroom house, on at least 2 acres of land in rural Florida.
By the age of 45, I will own a successful web marketing business, a diversified system of income streams, that is robust and not susceptible to changes in the economy.

Medium Term
Within 10 Years I will have finished school and paid off all of my loans for my education.

Within 6 Years I will obtain my PhD. in Business Administration.
Within 5 years I would like two cars that are dependable for my family. One of the cars to will be a van or something large to accommodate passengers, and the other car would be a truck, for hauling debris or materials for labor jobs when needed.
Within 5 years I will speak to a lawyer and start the process of having some of my criminal-record expunged.
Within 4 Years I will obtain my Bachelors in Business Administration.

Short Term
In the Next 3 years I hope to obtain my AA in Business Administration from Santa Fe College. In the Next 2 years I hope to obtain my Vocational Certificate in Marketing Management - Electronic Commerce.
In the Next 2 years I will start to take the necessary steps to obtain my license when my suspension is over.
In the Next 2 years I will have all my debt paid down that is not associated with school. In the Next Year I will start to work with the credit reporting agencies to get my credit back together.
In the Next 6 months, I will obtain employment through either the Federal Work Study program or a job that is off campus, to help towards establishing the income that I desire.
In the Next 6 months, I will begin to invest a portion of my income on a monthly basis.
In the Next 6 months I will obtain a secured credit card and begin to repair my credit.

Now, mind you, at this point, I will need to take each goal specifically, and formulate a plan for each one. Also, please take the time to realize the words used are very specific. Don't say, "I would like to", or "I hope to", state what you WILL do - make it factual. It's very important to do this. You can actually retrain the way your brain perceives things by changing the language that you use. Each day when you wake up, make sure to look at your goal list, and then read it out loud to yourself. Do it in front of a mirror in the bathroom if possible.

As you repeat these things over and over to yourself, you will begin to change the way your mind works. Instead of feeling negatively or hopeless by saying something like "I really hope I can buy a house by the time I am 50", you can train your brain to say "I will own a house by the age of 50". It really does work, it becomes like a "self-fulfilling" prophecy. Being negative and harsh on yourself will never get you any closer to achieving your goals.
The last thing you should do when setting your goals, is go over them with your spouse, or with a good trusted friend. By sharing them with someone else, you have committed to them. Have the person you trust hold you to your goals. They can do this by asking how the plan is coming on a regular basis, or they can simply contact you when you are due to complete a goal to see if you have followed through on your plan.

If you don't achieve the goal the first time, don't give up.

Sometimes life happens and you may not achieve every goal that you set. This is especially true when you first start setting the goals, and may not have a realistic plan or time frame for the task you have set out to achieve. This is very normal in the beginning and you will become better at the process as time goes on. Remember you are the one in control of this, and no one else will EVER feel that your goals are as important as you do. If you fail at first, try and try again. If you really get stuck and don't meet the goal after multiple attempts, get the opinion of someone trusted and perhaps the two of you together can devise a plan that will get you back on track.

What is the definition of success?

It's not a big house, or fancy cars, or a million dollars. Success is setting goals, and achieving them. The goals can be as big or as small as you want them to be. Sooner is better than later. You are the one that's in control. Success comes to those who plan and execute. You can be successful too - it really is in your hands. Train yourself mentally to be successful, set your goals and create a plan, and most importantly execute. The best thing about all of this, is that your success lies entirely in your hands!

Thank you for taking the time to read about goals and goal setting. I hope that this information can benefit you. Never give up, and always do the right thing. Never lie, and always try!

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