Goal Setting: What Is It and How Does It Work?

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While there are many principles to goal setting, the first principle is: ALL human behavior is goal directed.
In other words, everything we do is in pursuit of reaching a goal, whether the objective is an immediate goal or one that is long-term.
We behave in whatever way necessary to reach our goals.
Goals can begin as a simple day dream that is converted mentally into a wish that we put on our wish list.
From there, as we think about these wishes more and more, we move them from our wish list to a want list.
These are the things we keep thinking about that we would really like to have or become.
From there, if we keep thinking about those things we want, they begin to turn into what we need.
Our day dream has transformed from something we have thought about to a goal that we now need to achieve.
This entire process can take as little as a few seconds to several days, weeks, months, even years, depending on what goals we really NEED to realize in our lives.
Individuals and Businesses have many goals on their wish list, in their daydreams, on their want list, and their perhaps list.
In the cycle of human motivation, individuals/companies must mentally convert what they want to achieve to what they NEED to have.
Until this conversion occurs, little if any progress toward the achievement of their goals is ever realized.
This leads us to understand that there are several categories of goals and time limits on each category.
They are: An Immediate, or right now,Goal is one that can be achieved in a very short period of time.
Examples of immediate goals are what to have for lunch today, what to wear for work, whether to stop and get gas on the way to work, etc.
A Short Term Goal has a life span of 3-6 months.
They are such things as: deciding to buy a new cell phone, getting a new game console or determining whether to get an "A" in Calculus this semester.
An Intermediate Goal may last from 6-12 months.
For example, deciding to purchase a new car or working toward that next promotion at work.
A Long Term Goal may last from 1-5 years, and consists of things like saving for the purchase of your first home, getting a college degree, etc.
A Life Time Goal may begin at an early age and carry a person through their entire adult life, becoming a Doctor, Supreme Court Judge, or President for example.
When it comes to the achievement of any goal, the most important element is COMMITMENT.
Are you totally committed to the achievement: physically, mentally, emotionally and financially? Are you willing to do whatever it takes to make your goal become a reality? Many goals are never realized because we lack one or more of the necessary commitments that are required to achieve them.
We get lazy, putting it off for another day or time to concentrate on its achievement.
Other times, the goal violates one of the principles of goal setting from the beginning and it cannot be accomplished.
ALL goals have rules/principles that must be followed before you make a commitment to its achievement.
For your goals to be realized, they must follow 7 rules.
All goals must be: Conceivable: the goal must be conceivable in your mind, born in your mind of what you want and need to achieve Believable: you must believe that you can and will work toward the achievement of your goal.
It is not important that others believe in your goal, but, it is critical that you believe that you can and will achieve the goals you set.
Achievable: can your goal be achieved by you? Has it been achieved by others in the past or are you the first? Desirable: is the goal you set something you have a great desire to achieve? Will you be happy with the results? Are you willing to pay the price necessary to achieve the goal regardless of any and all hardships along the way? Measurable: are your goals "track-able?" Can you easily keep score as to where you are and where you are going on the journey to the achievement? Can you measure your progress daily, weekly, monthly, semi-annually, annually, etc.
? Growth Facilitating: will you grow as a person in the achievement of the goal? Will you learn more in the journey to its achievement? Stated Without Alternatives: can and will you go "all the way," doing whatever it takes to achieve your goal? You will need to, because, this principle means that you cannot see yourself without its achievement, no matter the obstacles that are in your way.
It is a full commitment to see your goal through to the end.
Be aware: IF your goals violate any of these principles, they must be modified or abandoned.
You can set another goal that does conform to the rules, which will satisfy the need.
Also, goals must be specific and precise.
Once your goals have been set & tested and a commitment is made to strive for their achievement, goals should not be changed or downgraded.
Yes, they can be modified, but, ONLY upward.
Goals of all kinds direct our lives.
Yes, it is true that we set many goals we never give another thought to.
As we approach a New Year, many of these types of goals will be made in the form of New Year's resolutions.
Most of us engage in the tradition and many break these types of goals within a very short time.
These goals are wants, not needs, and the rules of goal setting are not followed.

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