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Setting Goals that Stick

9/20/2011 12:55:24 AM

Sometimes I wonder how we all survived before sticky notes. They come in handy, don’t they, for jotting down all those things we want to remember to do? The discipline of writing down our tasks, and the sense of accomplishment received from completing them, are tell-tale signs of a productive person. I begin each day with a to-do list and I know with certainty it has made me more focused and effective. 

Doesn’t it stand to reason, then, that we should also take a “sticky pad” approach to planning our lives? After all, the most successful people begin with dreams and then establish goals and plans to make them come true. Poor or random planning puts your dreams in jeopardy and, at best, makes it take that much longer to realize them.

Even if you’re not naturally a goal-setter, it’s not difficult to become one.  Start by imagining what you want your life to look like. What are the large-scale goals you hope to achieve?

Once you’ve established your long-term goals, you can set some shorter-term goals that will help you achieve them. You can set one-year, six-month, and one-month goals, all of which will ultimately contribute to the larger picture.

At the same time, don’t forget your daily to-do lists.  You’ll be amazed how much more you accomplish. It doesn’t have to be a fancy leather-bound day-timer to keep you on track.  Many times all you need is a vibrant-colored sticky note placed somewhere visible to remind you what you hope to accomplish that day. Oh, and once all your items are checked off the list, be sure to take some time to enjoy yourself for a job well done!

“If you don’t know where you are going, you will probably end up somewhere else.”
Lawrence J. Peter
What kinds of goals have you established for the short-, intermediate-, and long-term?
What strategies have you learned to help accomplish them?

We’d love to hear your ideas!

Tagged as: goal setting, bucket list, goals, life skills, personal productivity, What I Wish I Knew at 18, parenting, teens

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Comments On Setting Goals that Stick

Ed McCahill - 9/21/2011 5:24:41 PM
Great advice, Den! During my final semester in college, a professor made us develop and write down our 10-year career and life goals. To achieve those 10 year goals, we had to develop 5 year goals. To achieve our 5 year goals, we developed 3 year goals. And, to achieve our 3 year goals, we set 1 year goals.

Having these goals in place - and in writing! - really helped focus my mind when I was presented with many options throughout my 20s. A written plan created without the pressure of having to make a decision gives you the freedom and confidence to say yes or no to new opportunities as they arise. I am pleased to say that I accomplished every single goal on my long list! I will always be grateful for that wise advice.

Reply by Dennis Trittin - 2/23/2012 9:28:02 PM
Thanks for sharing, Ed!
Best wishes,

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