7 Benefits to Setting Goals

Start Today for a Better Tomorrow

Goal Setting quote

When I was just 4-years-old I went through my first goal setting program. Going through that program (and many others like it) is why I have dedicated my life to personal development.

In that program (which was written by Paul J. Meyer), I learned “If you are not making the progress you would like to make and are capable of making, it is simply because your goals are not clearly defined.”

That quote has stuck with me. I remind myself of it when I’m struggling with anything. When I was younger if I would say “I can’t do something”, my dad would respond with “can’t is not a word” (like many other supportive parents). He would then repeat the above quote to me from Paul J. Meyer about goals. Repetition is the key to learning and that is why the quote stuck.

Goal setting has changed my life in so many ways. It’s helped me to build up a successful business around SOS Leadership, create an amazing marriage with my wife, and speak over 100 times in the past couple years.

I feel like everyone could benefit from better goal setting habits.

Here are 7 reasons you should be taking goal setting more seriously:

  • When you set goals you maximize your strengths and bring out the best in you.
  • Written goals lead to clarity. Goals help you determine what matters most to you.
  • Having clearly defined goals will improve your productivity. It will allow you to focus on action steps that lead you to accomplishing your goals.
  • Goals reduce uncertainty. People don’t perform at their best in an environment of uncertainty. Uncertainty leads to frustration, anger and mistakes.
  • Goals draw resources to you. When you set meaningful goals your needs usually will be met (not always as fast as you would like).
  • Goals improve your attitude. Setting and achieving your goals will become a habit. It will become a new way of thinking, which will allow you have a more positive attitude.
  • Goals provide direction on where you want to go in your life. If you are not where you want to be, you can change it by setting goals. Goals help you focus on the future rather than wallow in the past.

If you want to be the BOSS of your life, make a commitment today to set goals. It is pretty simple to do. Here are some rules to follow when setting goals:

  • Goals must be WRITTEN! Writing crystallizes thought, which leads to action.
  • Goals must have a TARGET DATE. Without this it is just a dream.
  • Goals must have ACTION STEPS.
  • Incorporate those action steps into your DAILY, WEEKLY, and MONTHLY PLANNING.
  • Make your goals PERSONAL. Remember they are YOUR goals, not someone else’s.
  • Watch out for CONFLICTING goals. Focus on what matters most.

Okay… I’m done yelling at you.

Goal setting begins with an awareness of where you are right now, but you also have to have a desire to change the future. There is no such thing as an unrealistic goal, but there are some really unrealistic target dates. Remember when you are setting goals that you can have it all, just not all at once.

There are so many benefits to setting goals. I have seen many of them first hand and continue to see the benefits every single day.

Goals are a prelude to action, they are a course to take; they are an expression of your strengths; they are an exercise of your desire for becoming a leader.

We are in the last quarter of 2015. Now is the time to start setting goals for 2016. But don’t wait three months to get going. Start today for a better tomorrow. Make no excuses. Your future awaits and goal setting will make ALL the difference.

And remember, “If you are not making the progress you would like to make and are capable of making, it is simply because your goals are not clearly defined.”

If you could use some help in setting better goals, I recently released a free 4 week course on goal setting. In the course I help you create a roadmap for achieving your goals and avoid some of the common mistakes people make when goal setting. Sign up below!

The Science of Personal Achievement

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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6 thoughts on “7 Benefits to Setting Goals

  1. Such a great message! The rules you list are imperative. Setting a goal is one thing; creating a plan on how you’ll get there is another. Actionable steps and deadlines matter. Without them, you are wandering a dream without a compass to lead you to your destination.

    Taking your message a step further… I think it’s important to note that you have to be flexible. Sometimes we make detailed plans to reach a specific goal only to find it’s not working. In this case, the problem may not be the goal, but the way we’re trying to get there. There will be moments where you hit dead ends or your attempts won’t yield results. That doesn’t mean your goal is impossible. It may just mean you’re approaching it the wrong way. Don’t be afraid to take a step back, analyze why a strategy isn’t working, and use that knowledge to redevelop your plan.

    Great blog, and great advice! Thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks for the comment, Elizabeth! I appreciate your point about being flexible. The best laid plans often go awry. There will always be obstacles and we must adapt to whatever happens.

      One of the big problems some people have with goal setting is that they become so obsessed with accomplishing their goal that they will stop at nothing until they have made it happen. This often leads to disappointment and broken relationships.

      It is okay to decide you no longer want to work on a goal. You should always be asking yourself this question: Is it worth it to me? I have a future post coming about this.

  2. Lucky you that you figured out the importance of goal-setting at such a young age. It wasn’t until college that I finally realized how important it was for everyone to set goals for themselves. As a teacher, I learned to make sure that each lesson I teach has a well-defined and achievable goal for my students. Goal setting will definitely change the way you live.

  3. So true! If you want to be a boss at life then goal-setting is a must! BUT, you made an excellent point, your goals need to be solid: written down, put under time limit, well-defined, and achievable.

  4. Great post! Setting goals in life is so important – both short term and long term goals. I agree with you that writing down your goals is necessary too! I think it’s really a relief to have goals. Because you know where you are headed and you know what you want. You aren’t left questioning the future as you would be with no plan in mind.