Perhaps you created a long list of intentions, and wishes of things you want to accomplish in 2015. You may even have set some target dates. There are countless techniques and methodologies to help define, plan, monitor and execute goals, and the truth is that they all work to a certain degree… if we follow them.
One critical step that is often overlooked in goal setting is digging below the surface to check the truthfulness of our stated goals. What is the actual “truth” behind our goals and objectives? Why do we really want to accomplish them? It is not uncommon -for us- to list objectives that we may have heard somewhere, or that we think will make us look good or feel great. Sometimes we even claim goals that have been defined for us at work. The result in these cases, most of the time, is frustration and little to no achievement.
Here are 2 tips to check the truthfulness of your 2015 goals before you waste any more time creating strategy after strategy to achieve them.
- First, let’s begin by checking the wording of your objectives. It may sound silly, but the way you describe your objectives can be a clue in deciding whether these objectives even belong on your list. I have clients that tell me “I need to do this…”. The use of the word “need” is a clear indication that this is something you don’t WANT to do. Maybe it should not be in your list of objectives. The word “need” carries what I refer to as “negative” or “draining” energy. Just saying the word makes you want to go rest! To check if an objective should be on your list of objectives for 2015, try replacing the “I need to“ with “I want to”; if you do not feel any resistance when you say it and it “feels” right, this objective should have a place in your list. It is important to make sure that most, if not all, of your list is made up of “I want to” objectives. If you cannot replace the “I need to” for the “I want to”, then it may be time to dig a little deeper to explore how or why that objective made it onto your list in the first place. When working on goals with my clients, we always do this exercise to ensure their valuable time and energy is not wasted on goals and objectives they really do not have the desire to pursue. So, next time you catch yourself saying, “I need to”, try rephrasing it with “I want to”, and see if it is truly a wish or just a goal you subconsciously adopted. That will make you look at things so differently!
- The second step is to answer the important money question. Whether or not your goal is related to money, ask yourself the following question: "If I had all the money I wanted, on a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being the least, and 10 the most, how important is it be for me to accomplish this objective? Why?" Money alone is rarely the reason why we choose a goal, and answering this question honestly will show you if this objective should be in your list. Understanding why this objective is important to you as well as how you will feel once you accomplish it, are key when deciding which goals should be on your list.
After you have confirmed the truthfulness of your 2015, you are ready to find the right strategy to make them happen!
Practicing these tips every time you define a goal will help generate the sustainable energy and motivation you need to accomplish anything you set out.
Keep me posted and let me know if your list changes after doing this exercise! I would love to hear from you.