The Art Of Goal Setting

You are currently viewing The Art Of Goal Setting
Photo by Anders Jildén on Unsplash

Here we are again. Another year has started, and this is usually the time to set some goals for the coming year. Have you set your goal already?

It’s challenging to find some reliable statistics about the success of setting goals and how many people do achieve what they set out to do. But I know out of my own experience that the success rate for reaching a goal is quite low. Many people I know have given up setting any goals at all. Their argument is often like:

  • There are too many things that get in the way anyway
  • I am glad if it doesn’t get worse
  • Life is too unpredictable to set realistic goals

Sounds frustrating, and that is exactly what it is for many. Goals suppose to be motivating. Something you dream about, you want to achieve. It supposed to make you smile and get you up in the morning.

So what is it then that frustrates many to the point that they give up setting goals?

I did some research on goals and goal setting over the last years and a few things stuck out:

Goals are yours only!

Don’t set goals that involve other people. If achieving your goals is based on other people, you’re not in control. Setting goals for others doesn’t work. For example, setting a goal for your family is not a good idea. It’s much better to sit down with your family and discuss your ideas. This will bring out the things your family members want, and you can see how your goals fit into that.

Don’t make your goals depending on your current situation!

A goal is a direction you want to go to. It doesn’t matter at which stage you’re right now. Your current situation might change at any given time, and that could influence your set goal. You want to be in charge of your direction and not react to changes that will always happen in life.

Strive towards your goal despite the steep path!

Nobody says it will be easy, but I say it can be a lot of fun. It’s like always, a question of perspective. You want to be able to use changes that happen in your life to get you nearer to your goal. For this to work, you need to avoid to react to these changes. The best way I found to do this is by assessing any change and to decide how to use it to bring you further. One thing is important: Never react without evaluating it first. This makes you being pro-active towards your goal.

Sometimes we can’t see the way to go, but that is the challenge. In my experience, these are the best times which get you the nearest to your goal.

Prepare and maintain yourself!

Often we come across difficult situations which require us to be mentally and physically fit. Make sure your mind and body are ready for the task. Being physically active and training your mind is vital for achieving your goals. Think about meditation, socialising and interaction with others regularly to keep your mind in peak condition. Learn about your body, how to train, and what to put in it. These things are often forgotten, but so important.

Don’t be too specific!

Setting goals should always start with the question “Why?” Setting a goal like making one Million Euro is not a goal without being clear why you want this in the first place. There are always multiple ways to achieve a goal. Restricting it to money is like limiting your options. A goal is a direction. A place you would like to be, A feeling you would like to have. It doesn’t mean you shouldn’t dream it and paint a picture on the wall. Just don’t make it dependent on that specific wall, but keep the why in mind and strive for the answer and not just the detail.

I have some goals I might never achieve, but I keep going, and the changes in my life have been amazing. The most important thing is to enjoy the journey, discover the new and see yourself becoming an amazing person with real purpose.

Are you ready for the ride? Where do you want to go?

John Di Stefano

An entrepreneur at heart and founder of the Entrepreneur Academy in Brussels, Belgium. He is teaching and supporting entrepreneurs in the skills every entrepreneur needs to create a better life for themselves and the people around them.

Leave a Reply