How to Write Meaningful Goals

How to Write Meaningful Goals

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Meaningful goals that align with our responsibilities rather than our wishful thinking
are worth the time it takes to make them, review them, and work toward them.

It’s a common scenario, at least for me.

Meaningful goals that align with our responsibilities rather than our wishful thinking are worth the time it takes to make them, review them, and work toward them.

I am in a reflective mood, thinking about all the ways I’m a slacker, all the ways I’d like to improve. I do my best to narrow it down to one three goals – habits to learn, results to reach – how about three of each? How about three for three different areas of life?

I write these down. I think about them. I imagine reaching them. I get excited.

Then I get caught up in the details of real, average days and totally forget about them.

You know what I’m talking about?

Still, I don’t think the right response is to stop making goals.

I think the right response is to set up a simple process to choose a handful goals that correspond to real life, that are regularly reviewed, and that keep us balanced and grounded.

Meaningful goals that align with our responsibilities rather than our wishful thinking are worth the time it takes to make them, review them, and work toward them.

Meaningful goals correspond to real life.

When I start thinking of goals, I often start as if I had a blank slate. I think about what I’d like to do, as if I’m in a vacuum, and start making goals about whatever has caught my fancy.

That’s not the way to write meaningful goals that actually fit real life.

Our goals should begin with thinking about our current responsibilities and needs. Then we can form goals around those actual areas of our life we need to be working on.

A goal can’t transform our life utterly. It can, however, help us narrow in our focus to where it needs to be.

Meaningful goals are reviewed regularly.

Writing something down on paper does not magically make it happen.

We do need to write down our goals, but then we also need to look at them regularly – during a weekly review and during our interval planning week.

We need to build regular review times into our rhythms if we want our plans to be helpful and our goals to be practical.

Meaningful goals keep us balanced & grounded.

When our goals are aligned with our real lives and regularly reviewed, they are a true help. They are a written reminder about the direction we are heading, about what is important to us right now. It’s so easy to get caught up in what’s urgent or what’s most interesting, but good goals keep us focused on our priorities.

When our goals are written across our vocations, as I teach in Work the Plan, then they also keep us balanced. Instead of favoring our favorite roles, we work toward improvement in each of our vocations and give our responsibilities the attention they require.

When our goals are written clearly and reviewed regularly, they keep us grounded. They keep us from getting distracted by our latest whims and they keep us from vague wandering, vague discontent, vague wishes.

Work the Plan is all about how to move from goals and direction to implementation and action.

I want to share the video on how to write meaningful goals with you for this new year. Watch it for free and come back to comment and tell me one of your goals for 2016!

Video Link: Write clear vocation goals.

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