In the pursuit of our dreams, the single most important thing we can do is set personal goals. Unless we become adept at personal goal-setting, we are destined to fall short of self-actualization. It’s easy to talk about how you would like to go back to school and get your degree “someday”, but if you don’t get the wheels into motion then chances are that is never going to happen. Yes, we do have to first form the idea in our minds, but then we must get concrete, well-formed goals on paper and start accomplishing them. Otherwise, we are surely doomed to never achieve anything at all.
Most times, the hardest thing to do is to decide what we want. What are your dreams? Where do you see yourself in ten years, in five years, or even in one year?
To make sure you achieve all your desires, begin by listening to the longings of your heart. As I stated in my previous article, “Become Lucky Right Now”, you must get clear about what you want. Maybe your heart tells you that you want to be a writer, that writing is your desire, your passion. Write at the top of a sheet of paper, “I want to be a writer.”
Now that you know what you want to do then you are ready to make your goal-setting worksheet. Make three columns and title them “Short-Range Goals”, “Mid-Range Goals” and “Long-Range Goals”. Start by writing realistic goals in the appropriate column. Some examples of Short-Range Goals would be to enroll in a writing class or start studying the writing styles of your favorite authors or to join your local writer’s guild. Maybe a Mid-Range Goal would include submitting an article to Associated Content. Possible Long-Range Goals may consist of completing a degree in journalism or communications or to write a novel and submit it to publishing companies.
Once you have exercised smart goal setting then it is time to get even more serious. List your goals for this month. Write on this month’s calendar for example that you are going to attend a writer’s guild meeting on Monday, May 4th, 2009 or begin a creative writing class Friday, May 22, 2009 and then do it. Get a good plan for the entire month. Write a goal down for most days such as, “I will submit an article to Associated Content each day in May.” The plan should be to immerse yourself in writing activities and surround yourself with other writers. While my kids were growing up I always told them to choose their friends wisely because my theory you become what you hang around with. If you wish to become a writer then you must hang around with writers.
Now that you know what your daily activities will include, get out there and do a little something every day. By the end of this very month you will see you have made huge progress. You will not have spent another month sitting back and thinking about how someday in the undefined future you would like to be a writer or a teacher or a chef. Begin now…today…right this minute. Write those goals down and get started.