100% Jodi: 5 Reasons Why Having Clear Goals is Critical for You
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Hello everyone and thank you for joining me. We are now in what is in my opinion the best month of the entire year in New England: September. Warm days, cool nights perfect for sleeping and less humidity and bugs, screams paradise to me. The heat and humidity impact me so dramatically I actually feel my body release tension when September comes.
It’s the same feeling in the Spring when you’ve been bracing against the cold for months and you go outside on that first warm day and realize you don’t have to hunch in on yourself. Instead you take a breath and your shoulders stay right where they are, relaxed. That is what September is to me.
And for those of you who keep saying summer is over and winter is upon us, stop it. We’re not there yet. Let’s enjoy the fall and all the awesome there is to be had.
I chose the topic today because I noticed a lot of activity lately on a post I first released in 2014 titled, 5 Reasons Why Having Clear Goals is Critical for Your Business.
It being September, the other New Year, and just before the beginning of the 4th quarter of 2018 I’m thinking it’s not a bad idea to go over some of the reasons why you would want to have clearly stated goals.
For those of you who have been listening to Women Taking the Lead on the regular, you know I love setting and accomplishing goals. In fact, if someone asks me what my hobbies are or what I do in my free time the answer I give, a bit tongue-in-cheek but also true, is I set and accomplish goals.
Some of the questions that drive me and I want to explore in my lifetime is, “Who am I? What am I capable of? What can I accomplish when I put my mind to it?”
As a side note, if you are someone who doesn’t have hobbies because any hobby you take up either begins to bore you or becomes a pursuit, don’t feel bad and stop judging yourself. Many of my Type A clients don’t have hobbies because we can’t stand to “waste time” or we turn a hobby into something we want to conquer.
If you want to accomplish something don’t be shy about it, make it clear and document it. Here’s the thing, you would never dream of building a house without a blueprint, a plan for what it would look like once it was built. You would never hire a contractor who didn’t know the materials, manpower, and time it was going to take to build that house.
Is your business or career less important than the house you would live in? Why, oh why, would you be a leader in business and not have a clear picture of what you are building and what it’s going to take to build it?
Goals, like proper nutrition, are often seen as additional work, but I’ve got five reasons why goals are actually the fuel to your success.
1. Goals Help You To Focus Your Attention
When you have clearly stated goals, preferably written and posted somewhere you can see them, your attention is brought back to what you are trying to accomplish.
Shiny Object Syndrome is common. I can’t tell you how many people I meet who believe they have a touch of Adult ADD. They don’t have Adult ADD; they’re not clear on what they should be focusing on in any given moment because everything seems important. As a result, everything gets a little bit of their attention and progress on any particular project or initiative is slow.
If you don’t state what’s important EVERYTHING will seem important.
2. Goals Give You A Clear Sense Of What To Say “Yes” And “No” To
If you are someone who has a hard time saying “no”, having goals is definitely in your best interests.
Whenever you are approached to give of your time, or resources the request is measured against your stated goals. You want to ask yourself, “Does this move me closer or further away from my goals?”
If it does not move you closer to your goal the answer is, “no, for now.” It’s not to say you will never help the person who is approaching you; it just means that at this time you cannot commit your time and resources to their initiative because you’ve got your own.
We are all busy. The question is what are you busy doing?
3. Goals Allow You To Measure Your Progress
This is probably one of the most important reasons for having goals. Having goals, setting milestones and timeframes gives you an opportunity to gauge how you are doing against goal.
Rather than having a vague notion of how you’re doing (I’m really busy) you have a realistic picture from which you can make decisions.
From here you can assess what’s working, what’s not working, where you may need some help, or perhaps you realize you need to tweak the goal.
Having these measurements can also give you sense of accomplishment. Because you have documented where you started from you can also see how far you’ve come. This can keep the motivation up when working toward the goal becomes hard and I did several episodes on “The Dip” that you can refer back to.
4. Goals Can Be Communicated To Employees, Partners, Contractors and Vendors
People want to help, they want to contribute. More often than not they don’t live up to this desire because they are not clear on where they can make an impact. Help them help you by sharing your goals and why you want to achieve them.
If the goal is vague (increase business, improve net profits, increase productivity) there’s not much there for people to get inspired by nor is there a clear idea of how they can help.
Clearly crafted goals and objectives motivate other people to see where they can make a difference for you in achieving your goals.
5. Bonus: Having Documented Goals Triggers the Unconscious Mind On Your Behalf
Your unconscious mind is always working. Having defined goals allows the unconscious mind to work on them, even when you are not. Your mind will constantly be looking for solutions and creative ideas to move you closer to your goal.
The more clearly the goal or the “problem” is stated, the better able the unconscious mind is at finding solutions.
These solutions usually come while doing a mundane activity like washing the dishes, brushing your teeth or going for a walk. Be ready when inspiration hits.
To Sum It Up…
Goals, though they may seem tedious and stress-inducing, are beneficial to you, your business, and the people around you.
If you have not done so already, take some time to jot down what you want to have accomplished by the end of the year. If you are struggling, reach out to me, a counterpart or a friend to help pull out the concept and get it down on paper.
As always, I hope this was of value to you and here’s to your success!
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