Goals are set on a number of different levels:
The first step in setting personal goals is to consider what you want to achieve in your lifetime. This exercise gives you the overall perspective that shapes all other aspects of your decision making. To give a broad, balanced coverage of all important areas in your life, try to set goals in some of these categories (or in categories of your own, where these are important to you):
Once you have decided your goals in these categories, assign a priority to them from A to F. Then review the goals and re-prioritize until you are satisfied that they reflect the shape of the life that you want to lead.
Also ensure that the goals that you have set are the goals that you want to achieve, not what your parents, spouse, family, or employers want them to be.
Once you have decided your first set of plans, keep the process going by reviewing and updating your to-do list on a daily basis. Periodically review the longer term plans, and modify them to reflect your changing priorities and experience.
A useful way of making goals more powerful is to use the SMART mnemonic. While there are plenty of variants, SMART usually stands for:
For example, instead of having “to sail around the world” as a goal, it is more powerful to say “To have completed my trip around the world by December 31, 2025.” Obviously, this will only be attainable if a lot of preparation has been completed beforehand!
The following broad guidelines will help you to set effective and SMART goals: