7 Golden Rules of Goal Setting

“If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.”

The result was that only 3 percent of the students had written goals and plans to achieve them, 13 percent had goals in their heads but hadn’t written them down and 84 percent had no goals at all.

After 10 years, the same group of students was interviewed again. The results were surprising.

The 13 percent of the class who had goals, but did not write them down, earned twice the amount of the 84 percent who had no goals. 

The 3 percent who had written goals were earning, on average, 10 times as much as the other 97 percent of the class combined.

Wow! Wouldn’t you like to have those odds in your favor? Well, you can. Let’s get started!

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Get Specific | 7 Golden Rules of Goal Setting

Decide exactly what you want. Be as specific as possible.

Turn your vague goals into actionable to-dos. For example, a vague goal of, “I want to lose weight,” or “I want to make more money,” mean nothing on their own.

You need to turn these into concrete goals and ask yourself what “losing weight” means, or “how much money do I need?” Your answer should be clear, concrete, and achievable.

So instead of, “I want to make more money.” say, “I want to make $XXX,XXX this year.” or, instead of saying, “I want to lose weight.” say, “I want to lose 20 pounds.”

Pen To Paper | 7 Golden Rules of Goal Setting

Write it down, make it happen.

Do you write down your goals and dreams on a regular basis? Or do you simply think about them, without actually recording them anywhere?

Did you know that when you write a goal down, your 10 times more likely to achieve it?

Those are definitely odds you’re going to want to put in your favor. Why does writing our goals down have such a huge impact? A goal that is not in writing is like smoke. It drifts away and disappears.

Not writing it down makes it vague and insubstantial. It has no force, accountability, or power.

A written goal is something you can see, touch, read, and modify if necessary.

As you may know, your brain has a left and a right hemisphere. In simple terms, the right side of our brain is imaginative and the left side of our brain in literal.  

This is important because if you just THINK about one of your goals, you’re only using the right side (or imaginative side) of your brain.

But, if you think about something that you want to achieve, and then write it down, you also tap into the power of your logic-based left side.

Schedule it | 7 golden rules of goal settingPick a reasonable time period for your goals and put the pen to paper.

If it’s a big goal, set a final deadline and then set mini-deadlines between where you are today and where you want to be in the future.

A deadline serves as a forcing system in your brain. Just as you often get more done when you’re under the specific pressure of a deadline, your subconscious mind works faster and more efficiently when you have decided you want to achieve a goal by a specific time.

The rule is, there are no unrealistic goals, only unrealistic deadlines.

What do you do if don’t achieve your goal by the deadline? Simple, set another deadline. A deadline is just a guestimate. Sometimes you achieve your goal before the deadline, at the deadline, or after the deadline.

That’s okay – be flexible.

When you first created your goal, you did so within external circumstances. Circumstances change and sometimes deadlines have to change as well.

Believe it | 7 golden rules of goal setting

Make a list of everything you can do to possibly achieve your goal.

As Henry Ford said, “The biggest goal can be accomplished if you just break it down into enough small steps.”

Make a list of the obstacles you’ll have to overcome (both external and internal) to achieve your goal.

 Make the list of the additional knowledge and skills you will need to develop in order to reach your goal.

Finally, make a list of the people’s cooperation and support you will need to reach the goal.

Make a list of everything you can think of that you will have to do and then add to this list as new things occur to you.

Keep writing until your list is complete.

Organize | 7 golden rules of goal setting

Once you’ve made a list of ways to achieve your goal, organize them by:

  1. Sequence
  2. Priority

When organizing by sequence, this means you will need to decide what needs to be done first, second, third, and so on… In addition, a list organized by priority enables you to determine what is more important and what is less important.

Sometimes sequence and priority are the same but often, they are not.

For example, if you want to start a business, the first item in your sequence might include doing research or attending a conference about that specific area of business.

But the highest priority might be to create a business plan based on market research to actually start the business you have in mind.

Creating a proper sequence for your goals is just like using a map that tells you what your next step is.

If you know what you have to do next, you’re much more likely to continue and eventually achieve that goal in the long-run. If you don’t, you risk feeling lost and getting distracted from the bigger picture. 

Start Now | 7 golden rules of goal setting

Act on your plan immediately. Take the first step. And then the second step, then the third step. Get going. Get busy. Move quickly.

Procrastination is not only the thief of time, but it’s also the thief of life.

The difference between success and failure in life is simply that winners take the first step. They are action oriented. Winners are willing to take action with no guarantees of success. Sometimes failure happens, but the comeback is always stronger than the setback. 

Be Consistent | 7 golden rules of goal setting

Do something every day that moves you in the major direction of your goal. This is the key step that will guarantee your success.

Do something 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

Do ANYTHING that moves you at least a step closer to your dream.

 When you do something every day that moves you in the direction of your goal, you develop momentum. This momentum motivates, inspires, and energizes you.

As you develop momentum, you will find it easier and easier to take more steps towards your dream. In no time at all, you will have developed the discipline of setting and achieving your goals.

Achieving goals may not always be easy, but it gets easier with momentum.

What are YOUR goals and what are you doing to achieve them? Comment below! 🙂

3 thoughts on “7 Golden Rules of Goal Setting”

  1. I love this! All of this is so true and I have recently been writing all if my goals and this reminded me of some of the steps I haven’t been doing. Also love the gifs!

  2. Thanks so much. Very appreciated. Must revise my lists.

    • You’re welcome Micah. 🙂

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