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!