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Goal Setting: A Scientific Guide to Setting and Achieving Goals

https://jamesclear.com/goal-setting

jamesclear.com

Goal Setting: A Scientific Guide to Setting and Achieving Goals
Goal setting is everywhere in our world. We set goals for our careers, our health, and our lives in general. It seems modern society is always encouraging us to think about the next milestone. However, what we don't think about enough is the science and strategy of how to accomplish your goals.

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Goal setting

Goal setting

Is the act of selecting a target or objective you wish to achieve.

Goal setting is not only about choosing the rewards you want to enjoy, but also the costs you are willing to pay to achieve your goals.

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The Rudders and Oars Metaphor

The Rudders and Oars Metaphor
It helps clarify the difference between SYSTEMS and GOALS:
  • Your goals are like the rudder on a small rowboat. They set the direction and determine where you go. 
  • If you commit to one goal, then the rudder stays put and you continue moving forward. 
  • If you flip-flop between goals, then the rudder moves all around and it is easy to find yourself rowing in circles.
  • If the rudder is your goal, then the oars are your process for achieving it. While the rudder determines your direction, it is the oars that determine your progress.

Example: If you’re a writer, your goal is to write a book. Your system is the writing schedule that you follow each week.

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How to Set Goals You'll Actually Follow

  1. Ruthlessly Eliminate Your Goals. Consistently prune and trim down your goals. If you can muster the courage to prune away a few of your goals, then you create the space you need for the remaining goals to fully blossom.
  2. Stack Your Goals. Make a specific plan for when, where and how you will perform this."Networking: After I return from my lunch break, I will send one email to someone I want to meet."
  3. Set an Upper Bound. Don't focus on the minimum threshold. Instead of saying,  “I want to make at least 10 sales calls today.” rather say, “I want to make at least 10 sales calls today, but not more than 20.”

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Align Your Environment With Your Goals

It's very hard to stick to positive habits in a negative environment.
  • Use simplicity. When in doubt, eliminate options. It is more difficult to focus on reading a blog post when you have 10 tabs open in your browser.
  • Use Visual Cues, like the Paper Clip Method or the Seinfeld Strategy, to create an environment that visually nudges your actions in the right direction.
  • Opt-Out vs. Opt-In. For example, schedule your yoga session for next week while you are feeling motivated today. When your workout rolls around, you have to justify opting-out rather than motivating yourself to opt-in.

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Measure Your Goals

Measure Your Goals

Evidence of your progress towards a goal is one of the most motivating things you can experience.

The trick is to realize that counting, measuring, and tracking is not about the result. Measure to discover, to find out, to understand.

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Setting and Achieving Your Goals

  • Step #1: Take Your Emotional Temperature, around the most important areas of your life.
  • Step #2: The Neurology of Ownership: When we take ownership of something–an i...

The “endowment effect”

It happens when we take ownership of something and it becomes “ours,” thereby integrating it into our sense of identity.

When we take ownership of something–an item, an idea or a goal–we are more committed to it

Not all goals are created equal:

  • Merely fantasizing about your goal is de-motivating – it actually tricks the brain into thinking you already have achieved it.
  • Goals that aren’t set up properly can end up having the opposite effect.

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Goal setting gives focus

Life is designed in such a way that we look long-term and live short-term. We dream for the future and live in the present. 

Setting goals provides long-term vision in our lives.

Practical goal setting

  • Evaluate and reflect. Regularly write down where you are right now, and if you are happy with your current level of satisfaction.
  • Define your dreams and goals. What do you want? Schedule some quiet “dream time” and think about what really thrills you. Then prioritise those dreams.
  • Make your goals S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-sensitive)
  • Have accountability. Find someone to hold you accountable to your goals.

Destination Goals

While we set our personal goals, we make the common mistake of setting a 'destination goal', focusing on the end result,  without considering the hardships and daily challenges.

W...

Life Direction

Instead of sticking to dream goals it is better to set a life Direction.

How to figure out a Life Direction? Ask yourself these fundamental questions:

  • What energizes me?
  • What do I look forward to?
  • When do I feel the happiest?
  • What do I want to learn?
  • What kind of places or people inspire me to strive for more?

Action Plan

Determine and plan in advance all the critical parts of your goal, and break it down in small, actionable tasks.

The small, divided tasks keep you motivated by providing a feeling of progress on a daily basis.