X-Challenge: Goals

how to set goalsI went to lunch with a friend and as we were eating she told me…

“Hey, I have this thing I want to do. I want to get fit.

I just read a book that said when you have a goal, speak it out.”

This is speaking faith words.

She continued, “Let other people know about it to hold you accountable and then you start working towards your goal. So I want to tell you – I want to be fit.”

I asked, “Can I challenge your goal just a little bit? Your goal is being fit. How do you know when you’ve got fit? What is fit? Is fit a certain weight? A certain percentage of body fat? A certain blood pressure? A certain measurement? What is fit?”

She was like, “I don’t know. I just thought I should get fit!”

I challenged her (and I am challenging you) to be specific.

Let’s write down where you want to go.

Because of her specific goal, I asked her questions like…

  • Why do you want to get fit?
  • Is it heart health that you are interested in?
  • Cholesterol? Blood pressure?
  • Is it a certain shape you’re interested in?
  • What measurements are those? Pants size? Dress size? Weight?

Let’s figure out exactly what it is so we know how to measure progress and so we know when we have reached our goal.

Don’t start out for an “-ish” kind of goal. When we set goals, they have to meet three basic criteria.

  1. Goals have to be specific.
  2. Goals have to be measurable.
  3. Goals have to have a timeline.

Not hard, right? Then get out a pen and start writing – right now.

Let’s start out with a specific goal.

Wanna be fit? Let’s qualify it like we did above.

Wanna be successful? What does that mean? In revenue? Sales? Staff size? Promotion? Title? Time with family? Rest parameters? Market share?

What do you want exactly? Write down every detail you can think of.

Now let’s start measuring!

The second basic criteria of goal setting is to make sure your goals are measureable.

Now that you’ve determined the goal, we have to know when we are actually moving in the right direction. We have to know when we are halfway there and when we are hitting plateaus.

It’s easy to get discouraged if it doesn’t look like progress is being made. When I look at my 8-year-old daughter, it doesn’t seem as if she has grown, but when I put her on her measuring board, it is clear to me that she grew almost six inches last year!

Measuring our goals helps us in three ways.

  1. To not be discouraged
  2. To evaluate how what we are doing right now is working
  3. To chart our incremental success.

Now let’s add a timeline.

The third basic criteria is to make sure we use a timeline.

Let’s go back to my friend’s goal. She’s going to be fit when? When she’s 65? And until then… is she going to do whatever she wants to do?

No – if her specific goal is to be fit, then we need to ask… When does she want to be fit? How soon does she want to be fit? In what time frame does she what to meet her specific goal?

Your Turn

Ask yourself…

  • What do you want to accomplish in 90 days?
  • What do you want to accomplish in 6 months?
  • What do you want to accomplish in 12 months?

Don’t wait to start writing this down. Start writing your goals RIGHT NOW. You can always tweak them. Let’s expand and stretch our lives to their full capacity!

Share with me your #1 goal right here in the comments.

12 Responses

    1. Nicole Crank

      Karen – A great (and challenging) goal! The closer we are to someone, the harder it is to respect them because we have the privilege of seeing their mistakes!

      Do you have a plan or a reading list for this? I have a few books I like if you are interested.

  1. Goal: to finish music therapy internship at Parc Provence (sometime late October or early November 2012), finish Maryville University requirements for degree in Music Therapy, take and pass the Board to become a Board Certified music therapist, and hopefully by the end of this year, to become a full time employed music therapist. This was also a goal my late husband saw me begin, now he is watching me from Heaven as I pursue God’s calling for my life.

    1. Nicole Crank

      Betsy – I am certain that you husband is proud of you. And so am I. So is God!!!!

      Pursue your dreams. You are going to make a GREAT music therapist!!

  2. Top of my priorities list is: To honor God with my money

    Specifically to be 100% Debt so I can give without hesitation.
    Measurably by paying $100.00 off each month at bare min.
    My time line is to be Debt free by December 31st 2012.

    I’m all ready 3 weeks into it, I completely paid off one of my bills.
    It’s a small win, but it made my day and I really did feel a sense of release when it was off my shoulders. Here’s to moving forward! Thank you God!

    1. Nicole Crank

      Jessica – I LOVE your plan!

      And the fact that you have already paid off one bill – you GO girl! Doesn’t it feel great to reach a goal?

      Thank you so much for sharing! I know it has been a week or two. Do you have any more wisdom for us?

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