I don’t know about you, but I really fell off the boat this year. Big time. Seriously…it’s almost like 2020 didn’t happen in terms of getting anything done. I just shut everything down when everything shut down. The only thing I did manage to do that took a little effort was to show the horse I’m riding successfully at Training Level and 1st Level a couple times, that wasn’t hard. He’s super, so it’s not like getting 60%+ was hard.
So why am I here writing to you about Goal Setting? Well up until literally the moment of the lock down, I was on fire. I was on my way to accomplishing some huge things for the year…and I completely let the sudden forced change in lifestyle end my momentum. So there goes another year of my life with nothing accomplished. I have, previous to this year, been pretty excellent at goal setting (like…earned my USDF Bronze in a year!), but this year got me. I’m all for 2021 being the year to go out there and really rock it.
Before we get into the first steps, go sign up for your free Goal Setting Workbook sponsored by Decidedly Equestrian and StreamhorseTV.
Goal-setting is one of those things that a lot of people like the idea of (like me!), but not a lot of people have the energy to follow through on. Why? Sounds easy. Looks easy. However, when you start breaking things down it is not so easy to keep up with. Setting too big of goals that easily fail is one reason. Setting goals you don’t actually want to do is another. Unreasonable timelines is another. Being on the “New Year Resolutions” kick with everyone else is another one. The whole universe turning on its head is another one. There are hundreds of reasons why a goal will fail and why you will give up on goal setting. This series is going to help you take control of the goal setting system and help it work for you.
Goal-setting is extremely important if you want to succeed at anything. Most people float through life and let it happen to them (and that’s okay if that’s your jam I guess). They end up with jobs they dislike, friends they’re not in love with, bad relationships, concerning finances, etc… Goal setting fights that “let it happen to me as it happens,” mentality. Goal setting helps give you clear direction, purpose and motivation to push your life to where you want it to be. No matter where you are in your life, there’s always something that can be more awesome.
It’s best to start thinking about your goals ahead of time by understanding your motivations and where you feel like something can improve. I’m not going to ask you to write any goals this month. I’m going to ask you to sit down and think about where you are stuck. What in your life feels like it needs a refresh? Here are a few categories to think about (but there are countless others).
Anything spring to mind? This can be a simple sentence, or an entire 5 page write up of what would make that life category for you seem perfectly balanced and well rounded.
Why is there something missing in that category and how would you like it to look? What does your dream finances look like? Dream family life? Health? Write it down (in present tense, not future tense. IE “I’m worth 10.5 million dollars.” NOT “I will be worth 10.5 million dollars”). We’re going to call this list your DREAMS for lack of a better word.
Now look at those DREAMS. The most important part of goal setting is understanding the Why of the goal. It’s one thing to say “I’m going to do this thing,” but if you don’t have a fully defined reason why you’re going to do that thing, you’re probably not going to do it (or you’re going to make a weak attempt and fail).
- Why is it important for your life to look like this?
- What is at risk if it doesn’t look like this?
- What will happen to you if your life did look like this (what will it feel like to you/look like if you achieve this dream)?
Still not totally inspired to give goal setting a try this year? Need more motivation?
Here are some major reasons to write goals for yourself:
- They give you clarity and focus on what you really want.
- They give you a plan/action items.
- They change your momentum and create new habits.
- They can motivate you when things get tough.
- They help you evaluate where you are.
- They give you a measuring stick for your successes (that is outside the “compare yourself to others” pitfall).
- They can help remove frustration and self sabotage.
If you’re interested in giving Goal Setting a try, keep an eye out for our next article and do your homework from this one. You’ll need it next time.