How to Set Goals That Stick!

A Guide on How to Stick to Your Goals!

Goal setting has been around for many years. In fact, a man by the name of Edwin Locke published the first paper on SMART goals in 1968 called, “Toward a Theory of Task Motivation and Incentives”. Locke stated that he believed that appropriately set goals resulted in superior organized performances.

Creating goals can be somewhat challenging, but that’s just the first step. Sticking to your goals can be even more challenging.

Don’t worry, I have a few tip and tricks for you to maintain your focus and achieve your goal.

Let’s start off by discussing why it’s a good idea to set a goal.

  1. Clarity of decision making: Having a goal and clearly defining it makes it easier to make decisions on the activities you want to do. You want to do things that would push you closer to your desired results.
  2. A sense of Achievement: Once you’ve officially accomplished your goal, it truly makes you feel good about yourself, boosting your confidence. That being said, this could inspire you to set more goals to possibly have a happier and healthier life.

Setting goals, research has shown, can have many positive effects on your mental health and really can make you happier.

Obstacles Along the Way

When setting a goal, you may come across some barriers along the way. In fact, most people do encounter things that get in the way and make  their goals harder to reach. Why?

  • People don’t take it seriously: Once a person sets a goal, they tend to treat it like it’s homework. They tell themselves they’ll get to it but never actually do.
  • They forget about their goals: A goal is set but the person forgets what the goal was and never pick it back up.
  • Excuses- This is a big one. A person can come up with absolutely anything to prevent them from completing their goal. For example, many people say
    • “ I’m too tired.”
    • “ I’m not motivated enough.”
    • “ I don’t have enough time.”
    • “I’m too stressed.”

Excuses will not get you where you want to be! Stop using them!

Young boy with boxing gloves

Strategies You Can Use

You’ll need to overcome those barriers. Here are some strategies you can use to help you stick to your goals:

  • Take it seriously: Think of your goal as your house and it’s raining outside so you need to get home as fast as possible. Setting goals are serious, so if you don’t take it seriously nothing will ever get done.
  • Remind yourself you have goals: Tell yourself that it is important to you, remind yourself every morning why it’s important to you.
  • Self Compassion: It’s okay to mess up, but don’t give up the second your given the chance. Remain calm and don’t overwhelm yourself.
  • Mindfulness: Maintain and accept the awareness of your thoughts and feelings during the process. Being mindful reduces stress and, consequently, stress can be a big reason why goals are not achieved. So staying mindful will lead to a more optimistic life.

Setting and accomplishing a goal may require a lot of effort, but when you’re willing to push through all the hard work, it’s worth it. Achieving multiple goals has positive effects on a person’s feelings, body, and mind. It even provides you with a bunch of new learning skills and experiences.

The positives of goal setting definitely outweigh the negatives. Knowing that should be enough motivation to inspire you to achieve your goals.  So, go ahead and start thinking about the goals you want to achieve.

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