Choosing To Focus On The Positive Continued…
Focus On Existing Goals Or Create Meaningful Goals
Exert from ‘How To Turn Your Dreams Into Reality’…
Bill Copeland, a well respected author, once said “the trouble with not having a goal is that you can spend your life running up and down the field and never score.” The truth is that in today’s society whereby instant communication is the norm with sites like Facebook, Hotmail and Twitter constantly vying for our attention, it can be challenging to sit down and assess what we want to achieve on a deeper level, let alone make time for those activities.
In Tony Hsieh’s book, Delivering Happiness, he pin points ‘perceived progress’ as an essential component of our overall happiness and, as the field of positive psychology develops, this principle is becoming widely accepted.
The process of making our dreams reality can be a very exciting and creative one. Essentially we are creating a map to get us from where we are now (Point A) to where we want to be (Point B). Though there is much advice surrounding the area of setting goals there is generally a consensus that all goals must be S.M.A.R.T.
S.M.A.R.T. goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timescaled.
Let’s explore the meaning of S.M.A.R.T. in this context further…
Specific goals identify what we want to achieve on a practical level and are often grounded in weekly participation of your chosen pursuit. For example, a vague goal would be to become a pop star. Although becoming a pop star is an admirable goal we need to think of how we are going to achieve that and add these interim steps to our main goal.
A specific goal in order to achieve chart success might therefore be to take weekly singing lessons and practice singing exercises for thirty minutes a day. Once we have specific goals we immediately feel energized as we know on a practical level what needs to be done.
Goals also need to be measurable; ideally goals should be measured in the short-term and medium-term. For example, you can easily measure whether you have been attending weekly singing lessons and practicing each day.
Every six months you can review whether you have made progress by seeing if you have attended any open mike nights or have started writing your own lyrics. The main objective is to outline how and when we will measure our progress. This helps us adjust our goals when necessary and keeps us motivated down the line.
In order to ensure our motivation remains high it is vital that our goals are achievable. This needn’t mean thinking small, but it is essential that we plan the steps of our goals methodically and that we allow a realistic timeframe to achieve those goals.
When our goals are truly achievable they will cease to be the dreams and fantasies they set out as and will start to appear more feasible, thereby increasing our drive to achieve them.