Walking into 2020

As we get closer to the new year, many of us get excited to set new goals for our professional and personal lives. While this is great, many of us usually find ourselves right back in the same spot as before. After a few weeks or months of faithfully trying our best to follow through with our set goals, we find ourselves right where we started. Usually picking up old habits or putting up with situations we just dislike. So what can we do differently this year?

Effective goal setting usually inspires and motivates us to keep track of our long and short term goals. It usually keeps our focus at high and frustration at bay. But first, let’s explore the three different types of goals there are! According to Kenneth Acha, there are 3 types of goals: Outcome goals, process goals, and performance goals. Each of the 3 types differs based on how much control we have over it. We have the most control over process goals and the least control over outcome goals. As you can imagine, outcome goals are based on results while process goals are based on the behaviors and strategies we implement to achieve our goals. Whereas performance goals are just the standards to get us there.

All of this sounds terrific but I felt like I still needed something more defined to help me get to the next level. So, as if it was God sent I found a leadership workshop program led by Robert Iger, CEO of the Walt Disney Company. Now you may ask what does leadership have to do with setting and achieving goals? Well, a lot! A simple definition of leadership is the art of motivating a group of people to act towards achieving a common goal. In my case motivating me.

After completing his program I knew this was the piece missing to all those unsuccessful attempts I had to reach my goals. It wasn’t so much that I didn’t know what I wanted, it was more a lack of knowledge to get me there. I really can’t go in-depth as to what the entire program covered but I can tell you that what really resonated with me was the following:

  • Build a Culture.- my core values, respect for others, value for hard work, good vs evil, a spirit of adventure, taking risks, believe in myself, resilience. (Simple you may think however a lot gets lost in the routine)
  • Use Your Time Effectively.- honoring yourself by having a quiet time. (So hard to do but it is a MUST to keep us balanced) set timelines for what you what in your day to take place. Infuse creativity every day.
  • Set Your Focus.- Having a clear sense of your priorities, how you spend your time and how this ties to your strategic focus.
  • Articulate Your Strategy.- how to plan, what are your priorities, your strategic focus needs to be, how will you allocate your resources (money, energy, etc) Selective strategies not too broad or you will spread your time, focus and capital with fewer results.
  • Set Your Priorities.- Communicate with clarity, invest in creativity, embrace technology, grow.
  • Set a Perimeter for Clarity.- be articulate, specific in your short term and long term goals. Articulate importance and value. Results equal to what energizes you, what drives you.
  • Integrity.-Honesty and trust are crucial when building and growing, despite the outcome goals, we must remain true to ourselves in the process.
  • Adjust to change.- this is key as we live in a constantly evolving, changing world and we must be open to change and adapt to the times we are in.
  • Build a Better Version of You.- Be true to yourself and what you represent before you can be true to anyone else. “To thine own self be true” Shakespeare quote.

Most of us know what we are seeking, what we wish we could attain whether this would be in our health, personal or professional sphere. As mentioned earlier we can probably control the process but not necessarily the outcome. Everything is a risk, nothing is a given, there are unknowns all the time, nothing is an absolute. I always thought that reaching a goal meant achieving my set ideas, wants, etc. I had totally missed the course of celebrating and honoring my success in the process despite the desired result. I would always find reasons to convince myself why I can’t celebrate yet as we have not reached the outcome goal. This is true in all areas of life, like with cancer patients for instance. We believe we must be cancer-free in order to see ourselves healthy rather than focusing on our daily health. We may not have control of the end result yet we have much control of our process. Learning how to foster these new strategies in our every day is the key element to success and truly living.

I hope you find this short summary of goal and strategy setting helpful as we begin a new year. My deepest desire is for you and me to succeed in our goals and continue to grow in the perfect version our God created us. Happy Blessed & Prosperous New Year!

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