“If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hopes.” – Andrew Carnegie
The importance of goal setting is indisputable. If you take a quick glance through history’s most successful people Andrew Carnegie, John D Rockefeller, Oprah Winfrey, Wright Brothers, and countless others you will find that these men and women ALL set goals.
Goal setting is an exciting process to gain absolute clarity in your life. By carrying out smaller process goals completed on a routine basis, you create a ripple effect that propels you in any direction you want to go in life. Here are three simple actions to accomplish more in 2017.
1. Seek Absolute Clarity
We are living in one of the greatest times in history to be successful. We have endless access to information at out fingertips and more people to learn from than ever before. Unfortunately, many athletes do not systematically record goals and fail at designing the life they desire (Weinberg et al., 1993). A lack of clarity only creates chaos and frustration. It leads to an un-fulfilling life of regrets infused with commentary like:
Wish I would have done this.
Why didn’t I start this earlier?
I don’t know what I want do with my life.
One method I use to create clarity came from my co-worker and great friend Greg Robins. Greg has been using a tool called the Passion Planner for quite some time now and recommends it to anyone looking to create their ideal life.
My sister Rachel is a prime example how to use the planner to create clarity. Rachel is currently serving our country in the United States Air Force overseas as a military police (MP). She enlisted right out of high school and now has vital decisions to make regarding her future. Is she going to stay in the military and make a career out of it, or is she going to go back to college to pursue a different career? These are the questions that were always in the back of her mind and by using the passion planner she was literally able to lay out her entire life along with objectives she needed to complete along the way.
This passion planner ask's you...
“If you could be anything, do anything, or have anything, what would it be?”
With no limitations but your own, you’re asked to write down your answers to the question at these specific time periods in your life (lifetime, three year, one year, and three months). Afterwards you’re asked to break down your top priorities at these specific times and create a list of objectives you need to complete to reach your goals.
2. Set Process Goals
There are two basic types of goals. There are process goals and outcome goals. Process goals are things you need to do every day to help you reach your outcome goal. Outcome goals are long term desired results and are heavily dependent upon continuous effort.
After attending Greg Nuckols’ weekend long seminar at Warhorse Barbell Club in Philadelphia, I came away with priceless loads of information regarding periodization, sleep research, cues, and biomechanics. On an interesting note, it was this simple calendar that my helped my clients increase confidence, productivity, and accomplish their top priorities each day.
How does the calendar method work? Watch the video below to get a small tutorial.
3. Have Bulldog Determination
Determination is the glue that holds goals together; without it your goals and dreams crumble right in front of you. You have to believe in yourself, your ability, your mind, that you can do anything and accomplish anything. It’s that simple. The easiest example of determination is in the world of Paralympics. Tatyanan McFadden is a USA Paralympian athlete who has won 17 medals. McFadden is paralyzed from the waist down and was told by her doctors she would have no chance of having an active lifestyle or even living long. She took this and used it as fuel to become one of the greatest wheelchair racers and skiers in the sport. When asked about what goals she had set for the 2016 Paralympic Games she said “I want to be the best, to beat the best, from the shortest sprint to the opposite extreme. That’s the goal. I want to make people say ‘wow’.” This is bulldog determination. Being able to overcome any situation, focus on one single goal, taking action, and never doubting your abilities.
Goal setting is important not only for personal success but for your happiness. Being able to set goals and accomplish them builds confidence which allows for both growth and learning to take place. Set big goals, set smaller process goals, and have faith in your abilities. Start today not tomorrow.
Carnegie, D., Carnegie, D., & Pell, A. R. (1981). How to Win Friends and Influence People. New York: Simon and Schuster.
(n.d.). Retrieved January 15, 2017, from http://tatyanamcfadden.com/