Goal Setting is a good way to stay focused on a specific topic, interest, or objective.
Goal Setting happens in two stages:
1. The Goal
Wikipedia defines a goal as:
An objective or goal is a personal or organizational desired end point in development. It is usually endeavored to be reached in finite time by setting deadlines. (Source: Wikipedia)
WordNet defines implementation as:
follow through: pursue to a conclusion or bring to a successful issue. (Source: WordNet)
Following only 2 steps seems like an easy task, but sometimes we can get distracted. Our goals never reach the stage of implementation. If we strengthen the bridge between our goals and our implementation of these goals, our goal success rates will skyrocket. I can attest to this because goal setting propelled me towards a valuable internship and spot on a premier soccer club last summer.
So how exactly do we increase our success rates? We use tools and daily reminders!
1. Write down a list and review it daily – I wrote down all my investment goals for 2007, and posted them on my bedroom mirror. This way, I can refer to my list on a regular basis, and track my progress. This is probably the easiest way to improve your success rate.
2. Use a Goal Tracking Software – If you spend lots of time in front of a computer screen (like me), then seek out a web goal tracker. My favorite is Joe's Goals. It's free and easy to use. You simply list your goals, and check them off after completion. The site also provides goal tracking reports that show you positive or negative trends in your goal setting techniques. It's the ultimate tool for goal setting.
3. Send yourself an e-mail – It may sound creepy, and you'll probably accuse me of talking to myself. Nonetheless, self reminders are as powerful as you make them. For instance, my checking account balance reminders have saved me hundreds in overdraft fees.
Examples of Possible E-mail Reminders
- Payment due dates
- IRA contributions deadlines
- To-Do Lists
- Grocery Lists
- Taping Television Events (wish I could afford Tivo!)
- Exam Dates
- Assignments/Project Deadlines
Different methods work for different people. What's work for you? Are you addicted to setting goals like I am?