One of Zig Ziglar’s most popular quotes is, “If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time.” It’s so profound, yet simple. It demonstrates a deep insight into how so many people go about their lives. Sure, we all have goals and we all have plans but all-too-often these are vague or just incomplete. This strange yet true phenomenon helps to explain why some people win big time while others fall short. It’s certainly not that we don’t have the desire. But, pessimism, doubt, uncertainty, fear, and more negative emotions and frames of mind are all real obstacles. To get through this barrage, you need goals.
Why Having a Concrete Goal is so Important
Sir Richard Branson and Michael Jordan have both spoke about failure and its valuable lessons. But sometimes, failure isn’t missing a goal, it’s the failure to actually have a goal. When you start a business, your goal is to make a profit. Some people are genuine, while others attempt the fake it until you make it strategy. But, in order to make a profit, you’ve got to have an actionable plan in-place to follow, step-by-step.
Business owners should not fear setting goals or projections because there is absolutely no downside to doing so. Also, it is important to remember that goal setting doesn’t have to be only about revenue. It could relate to innovation, employee retention, service offerings, or anything that is important to enhancing your business. —Inc.com
If you make a mistake or go through missteps, it is possible to start over again. But it all rests on having a goal to achieve. You need something that’s worthwhile for the sake of motivation. And, it can’t just be emotional. You’ll run out of that emotion and sour along the way. It’s must be something you want or something you need that keeps you focused on the prize. Ultimately, whatever the goal is, it must be clear and definable.
How to Achieve a Goal
There are many points in our lives when we need a serious change. Going into business for yourself is one of those times. It’s a big step and one that can easily be overwhelming. Doubt and fear will play a role but with an achievable goal set, you can triumph. However, you can’t take a shotgun approach. Any goal must be SMART: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based. And, here’s how to achieve that goal:
- Write your goal down in descriptive detail. It’s not enough to just think it, you must write your goal down and it’s got to be specific (the first part of the acronym). If you don’t set a specific goal, you’re falling prey to the famous Zig Ziglar quote.
- Set a goal that’s consistent with your values. Align your goal with your values. Otherwise, you are setting yourself up for a heavy heap of trouble, frustration, and ultimately, futility. You won’t make it if you can believe in it in your heart and mind alike.
- Formulate a plan and cultivate a good mindset. Now, layout a step-by-step plan for yourself to follow. Just like the ultimate goal itself, this plan must be specific. Cultivate a positive and thoughtful mindset. Think about accomplishing each step and let your dream inspire you.
- Review and appreciate your progress every step of the way. When you do accomplish a step toward your goal, you should take time to reflect and appreciate what you’ve done. This positive reinforcement will pay big dividends throughout the process.
- Keep things in perspective and don’t let discouragement derail you. If you experience a setback or make a mistake, don’t let it get you down. Instead, think about what you’ve already accomplished and keep a healthy perspective about what’s truly important and what isn’t.
What have you learned about setting and achieving goals? What steps do you think are the most important? Have you learned something valuable from achieving or missing a goal? Please share your experiences and thoughts!