Realizing Our Dreams

Don’t Just Set a Goal – Make an Action Plan

Defining your goal is the first step to reaching it and it’s crucial to define it correctly. But you’ll never reach your goal unless you create an action plan to get there.

An action plan works like a roadmap. To get from here to there when you’re driving, you have to know where to go. You rely on a roadmap, or on GPS, to direct you there.

Similarly, an action plan will help you get from where you are now to where you want to be when you are seeking your goal. It’s important for you to spend some time thinking it through. Just preparing the plan puts you on the path to reaching your goal because it helps you to anticipate results, consequences, and potential pitfalls.

Like your goal, your plan should be optimistic but realistic. Be sure to assign deadlines for each step. Set intermediate goals so that you can monitor your progress. Break the intermediate goals down to monthly, weekly and even daily guidelines. Continue reading

Tips for Defining Your Goal

The first step in reaching your goal is to define it. A well-defined goal is a real target and you will be able to aim for it. On the other hand, if you don’t define your goal well, you won’t be able to plan for it, work towards it, or even know when you’ve gotten there.

It is essential that your goal reflect your own deepest desires. Don’t set the goal that you think you should set. Set the goal that expresses your real ambitions. If it takes you some time to determine what your real ambitions are, spend that time before you start to work on your goal.

Your goal should be challenging but realistic. If you are one of the many people whose goal is to lose weight, set an optimistic but realistic weight goal with a deadline that can be attained with work and dedication. If your goal is too ambitious, you will be discouraged from the start.

When you set your goal, decide on a deadline for it, too. A deadline will make a goal real. It takes it from the realm of “maybe someday” and puts in in the realm of “starting now.” Like the goal itself, your deadline should be optimistic but realistic. You want to encourage yourself to act with intention, but you don’t want to ambush yourself by making something harder than it has to be. Continue reading

Write It Down and Say It Out Loud

To achieve your goal and make your dreams come true, you need to commit. Make your commitment big. Make it to yourself and to others. Write it down and say it out loud.

Writing your goal down makes it real. Writing your action plan for reaching the goal helps make it stick. Once it’s written, display it to yourself. Tape it to your bathroom mirror, your refrigerator, or your bedroom door. Write it on a post-it and stick it on your computer. Make it the background to your smart phone.

The constant reminder reinforces your dedication to your goal. It works on your subconscious, helping you to find new ideas. It makes it impossible for you to put your goal out of your mind. And it communicates the goal to others, too.

Saying your goal out loud is another way to communicate your goals to others. Bringing others into your confidence about your goal is great for accountability. Your trusted friends support you as well as discipline you. Continue reading