Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Setting Goals

I had the opportunity to hear a presentation on goal setting last week – not once but twice.  And while the speaker’s audience was young girls who were either pregnant or already had babies, I felt like her comments were addressed directly at me.  Sure, it was the same stuff I had heard throughout my career, by different inspirational speakers projecting different PowerPoint templates.  But this time it meant something.

This time I don’t have a supervisor, a performance review, or a pending deadline driving my need to set and accomplish goals.  It’s just me now.  Just because I’m retired doesn’t mean I don’t have goals.  And since I do have goals, why wouldn’t I use these time honored techniques to work toward achieving them? 

Here are some of my key takeaways on goal setting:

1.  Don’t settle for less than what you want.
2.  Make your goals specific and measurable.  Know the difference between a good idea and a goal.
3.  Break your goals down into “baby steps.”  What will you do in one week toward your goal?  One month?  One year?  Five years?
4.  Write it down.  Keep a journal of your successes toward your goal. 
5.  Reward yourself for steps toward your goal – even if it’s as simple as checking it off the list. 
6.  There will be fear – if you’re not a little bit afraid you’re probably not reaching far enough. 
7.  There will be negative thoughts – control them.
8.  Use affirmations.  An affirmation is a positive statement that describes a goal in its already completed state. 

I wrote my affirmation in my journal:  “I am a published author, signing copies of my book in a bookstore in Minneapolis, in the summer of 2017.”  Here we go!

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