Determination is an integral part of my character, which helps me in reaching goals, as each and every time I take up something new, I am determined in my success. This very trait of my character identifies me as a personality, and I am more than convinced that I would not have achieved everything I have now without it.
I have always tried to set clear targets and reach them whatever happens. At the moment, despite the fact that I am fully indulged in studying, I find time and strength to start up new activities and reach new goals. One of my short-term goals relates to one of my dreams – visiting Japan. I have always been attracted by this culture: mysterious, magnetic, charming, and at the same time still unexplored. Japan is one of the countries which is at the top of my ‘to do list’, and I am convinced that it is high time I let this Eastern mystery into my heart. Despite the fact that a trip to Japan is rather costly, I have saved enough money, and am ready to spend it on this particular goal. Not only is it a good way to meet new people, but also a brilliant opportunity to learn more about the culture, traditions, people and other peculiarities.
When it comes to some long-term goals, I have also made up my mind. I am convinced that the best source of investment is knowledge. That’s the reason why I’ve decided to enroll in Spanish courses and study the language. Taking into account that the contemporary world has been developing with enormous speed, Spanish language has penetrated almost all the countries. The vast majority of countries all over the world are using Spanish as their official language. I am not sure whether I will need it in my future work, but I am determined that it will help me in the future immensely anyway: while travelling, meeting new people, reading authentic literature or even watching films, let alone opening new horizons.
As has already been mentioned, I am an extremely determined person! I do set clear targets, and I am convinced that whatever happens, I will do my best to succeed.
"Don’t be encumbered by history – go off and do something wonderful."
(Robert Noyce, Co-founder of Fairchild Semiconductor and Intel)
If you want to do something wonderful, the first step is to decide what that something will be. Goal setting is probably the most significant factor in improving performance in nearly every area of life. Goals are not only great motivators; they provide a focus for your efforts and help you make decisions along the way.
This article deals with the practical side of goal setting and planning. When we set a goal we are actually stating how we would like to improve the world – specifically some aspect of it that we can control. So we can express the goal as a description of the improved situation. How would you like to change your world?
Start with the long-term view: what do you really want to achieve in your lifetime? Many people find this difficult: after all, it could be a long time, with many possibilities and opportunities. So put it another way: what would you really regret not having done or achieved in your lifetime?
Think about what you could aim for in different areas of your life:
- Education and personal development
- Hobbies and personal interests (art, music, intellectual pursuits, community, sports and fitness, etc)
- Peer group: career, social and neighborhood
Whatever goals you can think of in each area, write them down – or put them straight into Goalscape!
Make sure your goals are SMART. They must be:
Test each of your goals against this list by asking pertinent questions. There is more background on SMART goal setting here.
Once you have collected all the goals you can think of, review them: narrow down your list and start to set priorities for those that remain. Consider what you have already achieved and how you did it; and where you have failed and why. What does this tell you about your strengths? Where might you need to develop and learn new skills? Answering these questions will provide clues as to which goals are within your reach.
Play to your strengths in terms of your talents and skills; yet look for ways to extend yourself beyond your comfort zone. Make sure you choose your own goals: those that are in line with your own personal values, rather than merely reflecting the expectations or wishes of others (parents, teachers or peer group). Do however share your goals with those close to you, especially where they are involved in a particular area – eg your partner, your boss and colleagues (for work goals), team members and coach (for sports goals) – and take their wishes and opinions into account.
Keep breaking down your big goals into smaller subgoals. Set their relative importances according to the contribution they make to their parent goal.
Always be prepared to add or change some of your goals and their relative importance. Set specific targets in the lowest level goals, decide how to measure your progress and enter it into your plan as you go. Checking off completed tasks and seeing your progress advance will make you feel really good! Celebrate your major achievements with everyone who helped you.
Future articles will include specific advice about working towards your goals; some background about why goal setting is so powerful; and how to make sure your goals are meaningful.