This goal setting tip is the secret sauce for your goals
This goal setting tip will ensure you choose the best path for your goals. It can craft the vaguest goal into a well defined path. A pathway that is completely aligned with your values and priorities.
I call my #1 tip to rock your goal-setting world – Analysed goal setting.
This process involves brainstorming all the possible options to achieve your goals. Then, selecting the best path – based on your personalised criteria (which is done through a quick and easy analysis).
Now, you can do this on a bit of paper or similar. But, if you would like my fully loaded spreadsheet with preformatted formulas. Grab it below.
Superpowered goal setting tip in action
The reason this is my #1 goal setting tip is because I have used it to change my life.
At the time, I was unhappy with my job and I was ready for change. But, I had no idea what I wanted to do.
There is always a danger when you are not sure what change you want or need – you do nothing. You may just sit back and wait for something to change. (And this was the road I had taken… for years.)
However, unfortunately, (unless you are really lucky) doing nothing often has the unsurprising effect of nothing changing…
So, thankfully for my lacklustre life – I used this exercise.
I started with the loose goal “I need to do something about my life” and ended with a clear picture of my various options. Plus, an understanding of how each stacked up against what was important to me.
And perhaps the biggest takeaway at the time – the trajectory I was on – was the least aligned to my priorities.
So, today I want to walk you through the process – so you can change your life too.
#1 Goal setting tip kick off – the prerequisite
The first thing you need for this exercise – is to decide on a goal.
Maybe it’s a new job, greater life balance, a passion project – or, maybe you just know you what something different.
(If you need help deciding on a goal this article has got your back: Wellness wheel activity = game changer)
The key is – to be ready to make a change. Scratch that. You are excited to reach your goal.
Once you have your goal (as vague as it may be) – you can use the analysed goals setting process to flesh it out and choose your ideal path.
#1 Goal setting tip step 1: Brainstorming
Now, I am sure we are all familiar with brainstorming – so I won’t teach you to suck eggs.
But what I will say is this should be the wildest and wackiest brainstorming sesh you have ever had.
For example – if we use the loose goal of “changing jobs to something better”.
You would list obvious options (including stay in the current job) but if you have ever thought of being Prime Minister – put that – if you have wished you were a 1950s housewife – put that – Astronaut – ditto – professional couch potato – samesies.
The idea is to completely clear the options out of your head – the practicality of your options sort themselves out in the next steps.
#1 Goal setting tip step 2: Criteria
The next step is to decide the criteria you will use to rate the suitability of your options. This will allow you to calculate how they stack up against each other and your priorities (ie whether they are winners or not).
As part as your criteria – I recommend you use your core values.
These are the boxes that you must have ticked in the ideal world. Or in this case – your ideal job.
These are your foundational priorities that will make you feel fulfilled and content.
(If you have never done a core values exercise, or it has been a while, I recommend doing one now. If you would like access to mine – check out Day 2 of my free email course).
To use me as an example – my core values are:
- Learning (ie. I always want to to be learning)
- Challenged (ie. I always want to have challenges to unpack)
- Helping (ie. I am happiest when I feel I am helping people)
And given the nature of our wild and wacky brainstorming – I would add another:
- Practical (eg. it’s probably not practical to think I could turn back time to the 1950s)
You might like to have additional criteria relating to ease, cost, time etc.
#1 Goal setting tip step 3: Analysis
Now you have a set of criteria – you will use this to rate your brainstorming options.
So, review each option and give it a score for how well it meets each criteria.
My example: Astronaut (I will use a score of 1-4)
- Learning – 4 (I imagine you would be learning all the time)
- Challenged – 4 (I think it would be ridiculously challenging to be an astronaut)
- Helping – 2 (I guess you might be helping the world in the broader sense with your achievements – but it wouldn’t be like a teacher who helps people directly every day)
- Practical – 1 (There could be many reasons for this – but I am going to go with the fact that because I am ridiculously claustrophobic there is little chance I could do anything spaceship related [I haven’t rated it 0 because there is no required time travel])
So total score: 11
I would now go on to score the rest of my options.
#1 Goal setting tip step 4: Review
Now that you have a score against each of your options – you will be able to look at your highest-rated options and see which options align best with what is important to you and why.
From this list you can pick your most suitable goal.
The next step would be building a plan to start putting your perfect goal into action.
If you need a hand – check out this article to build a 6-week action plan: Goal setting challenge = wildly transformative.
From lacklustre to sparkling
So – rewind to when I knew I had to do something different with my career and I didn’t know what.
I completed this exercise and was completely surprised that my current role scored pretty terribly against my core values when compared to other options.
At this point – the writing was on the wall (well in the spreadsheet) that something had to change. And, it gave me the courage (or at least convinced me) to make assertive changes in my life.
So, this is my #1 goal setting tip because it set me off on a direction that helped me leave my lacklustre life behind. And put me on a fulfilling and value based path.
Consider this exercise as the special sauce in your goal-setting menu of options.