Have you ever taken note of these things as regards setting and achieving goals? 

  • How pumped you get when writing and setting your goals
  •  The excitement that comes with finally taking charge of your life (even if it’s just in writing)
  • The smile on your face when you visualize the result (still at that point you’re writing)

Good! Do you also observe how the excitement fizzles out a few weeks after? That part sucks right? Yeah, we know. 

Here’s good news (if you consider it as one), so you don’t feel like you’re alone: “Research shows that 92% of people don’t achieve their goals”. At WildFire, this is not so much a statistic that puts smiles on our faces, as we’re known for going after our goals with passion, and we’re sure you’re not so pleased either, seeing that you’ve read this article to this very point. 

That’s why we are taking time to share some of the effective ways to achieve those goals you have set, whether it’s to live a healthier life, start a business, create a work-life balance, get more done at work, or any self-development goals

You’ve got to want to achieve them

How exactly do you do this? Attach a strong reason for every goal you have set. In other words, give your goal a strong WHY. Your reason for setting a goal has to be self-motivating enough to get you on your feet on days when you don’t feel like doing anything, this will fuel the urge to get them done.

For example, if your goal for next month is to take an online course because everyone seems to be taking one these days, there’s a chance you might not stay dedicated to it as compared to if the reason is to gain knowledge and certification that will qualify you to apply for a dream job or get a better position at work.

Do you get the picture? One goal, two different reasons, one is motivated by an innate desire for knowledge and personal growth.

Apply the SMART Goal-Setting Technique – It Works

“If your goals are SMART, the odds of you actually meeting them go up,” says Sami Main, a certified life coach, and a published author. What are SMART goals? They are:

Specific: Goals that are clear and well-defined enable you to put more focus on achieving them. For example, a goal to “Spend more time with the Family” is vague when compared to selecting a time with a recurrent date on your calendar that you plan not to skip, in spending quality time with your family. 

Measurable: Researchers at the University of Sheffield in the U.K. found that people who measured their progress toward goals were more successful than those who didn’t.

Attainable: setting an attainable goal helps you figure out ways you can meet that goal and work towards it

Relevant: Your goal must align with your values unless you will get discouraged along the way. Make realistic goals

Timely: Putting a time-constraint on your goal helps you in getting them achieved.

Break Your Big Goals into Smaller Goals 

Another effective way to meeting your goals is to break those goals into sub-goals so you don’t feel overwhelmed, sub-goals are smaller tasks.

Make a list of tasks out of your big goals and once you have a full list, schedule those tasks to times you’re most active.

For example, it’s easy to get obsessed with wanting the stature of a bodybuilder, you’re locked and will do anything to have it, like working out for 2 straight hours on your first day at the gym. However, you can burn out and not be able to lift your toothbrush the next day and that might be the end of that goal.

 But you will do more if you schedule your work out sessions, say for, 3 days in a week (30 minutes for each day) at 7 pm (if you’re more active in the evening), or 6 am (if you’re more of a morning person). 

As the days go by, you can take it up a notch as your body stretches to adjust to the change, and before you know it, you’ve achieved your goal of working out without feeling overwhelmed because you broke it to doable tasks. The same thing works for other aspects of your life you set goals for, hitting sub-goals keeps you motivated and gives you an incentive to continue.

Make a Habit Out of Your Goal

When you do something repeatedly, you are integrating a behavior in your brain, and over time it becomes so natural to you that you do it almost automatically. Whatever your goal is, be intentional about making a habit out of it, and in time achieving it becomes effortless.

These 3 things will help you:

  1. Stick to the same time: It will be easier for you to follow through on achieving your goals when you do your tasks (sub-goals) at the same time recurrently. 
  2. Create a Trigger: Your phone’s wallpaper, your alarm clock, a notification on your phone, or an activity in your day can function as a reminder that triggers you to get a task done. These triggers will help your brain to remember that it’s time to do your set goals for that day, thus boosting the creation of a new sensual pathway in your brain- the formation of a habit.

You can equate this to how you’re almost always at attention when you hear the national anthem or how you don’t enjoy eating when you’re not seeing a movie.

Another way of creating a trigger is to stack your goal on an existing habit.

Try this if your goal is to read more books: For the next one week, immediately after brushing your teeth, read at least 3 chapters, you’d observe that after the first week, subconsciously you’d want to pick up a book after brushing your teeth. You’ve stacked your reading goal on your daily habit of brushing. It works for other goals too.  

3. Be Consistent with it for at least 2 months: Consistency is key in habit formation. Research shows that it takes exactly 66 days to form a new habit loop in your brain. So if you’re going to be meeting with your goal by making a habit out of it, you’ve got to stick to it for at least 2 months without taking any significant breaks.

Easier said than done? Probably, but challenge yourself, it’s hard but it gets easier.

Also as regards habit, if your goal is to quit a habit, ensure you replace it with a new one, cause if you don’t, you create a void that can easily make you relapse.

Create an Environment that Aligns with your Goals

When you do this, it keeps you highly motivated and mentally focused on your goals

An environment in this article can be three things:

  1. Your Personal Space: this is where you write your goals on sticky-notes and put them on your walls, your mirror, your computer, or any place you know you can’t go a day without checking, this will put you on track.

Also, from your personal space, eliminate distractions or anything that can tempt you. For example, you have a better chance at a goal of eating healthy if you don’t have junks within your reach.

  1. Your Social Media Platforms: To be realistic, it’s sometimes hard to stay off social media, but you can use it to meeting your goals. How? For instance, if your goal is to be a graphic designer, follow more of professional graphic designers on all your social media platforms, you’ll be amazed at how posts on your timeline will motivate you to focus on your goals.
  2. Your Circle of Friends: You will meet up with your goals when you associate with people that push you towards achieving your set goals. If you want to start a business, make friends with entrepreneurs.

Reward Yourself

As simple as this sounds, it’s effective in pushing you to do more to meet your goals. For every milestone you achieve, reward yourself, it could be in the form of a good meal, a movie, or a break. 

But with the break, you have to be careful and intentional about it, sometimes you need will power from transitioning from the break-phase to getting back on track to achieving your goal.

Anticipate Potential Obstacles

Life can happen, you might experience a setback or face an obstacle- which is inevitable at some point along the way, but when you put this into consideration in meeting with your set goals and you set contingency plans, you’re more likely not to throw your hands in the air and decide the goal isn’t worth achieving after all.

Take for example, your goal to work out more. If you put into consideration that you might fall ill at some point, and not be able to stick to your routine for that period, you can set up plans to pick it up at a slower pace after you recover. With this in mind, you stand a chance of getting back on track with your goal of working out. The same thing works for other goals you have set, it always helps to have a contingency plan for when “life happens”.

 A contingency plan can be having someone to reach out to when you face an obstacle in achieving a career goal. This leads us to the next point which is…

Be Accountable

The American Society of Training and Development did a study on accountability and discovered you have a 65% probability of completing a goal if you’re accountable to someone. We’re adding: “to not just someone, but someone reliable”.

When you are accountable to someone or a group of people for doing what you said you would do, you can easily get stuff done because you engage the power of social expectation.

Picture this: If you tell your boss you’re going to get a task done by a certain time, you’re more likely to do everything within your might to get it done (especially if you’re not a big fan of getting fired). It’s like that with goals too, when you have a reliable person check in on your progress, there’s that push to get things done.

In Closing

The time is always right to set new goals and achieve the pending ones you have, who says you have to wait till it’s the New Year to pick on goals? Set daily and weekly goals, and be intentional about meeting them.

We wish you all the best!

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