Setting Goals I Can Actually Achieve

Prioritizing and Setting my Goals

Our biggest problem when setting goals is that we don’t know how to write goals that we can accomplish, and we instead end up with unrealistic and ill-defined goals.

It is the difference between goals and visions, and this is the difference between goals that you can achieve and those you can’t.

Before you can set any goal you must first know what it is that you want. I wanted to retire in style and have the money and other resources to do what I want, when and how I want. That was quickly ripped from me when the interest rates plummeted a few months after the pandemic hit!

The Problem With Goal Setting

My short-term goal is to make more money.

So it would be easy to make your goal: “Double my income by this time next year.”

That sounds like a perfectly legitimate goal that would work well, but in fact, it is far too vague and too long-term.

If my goal is to ‘double my income’, then this gives me no structure to how I’m going to get there. And not only that, but a year is a long time, meaning that I can end up putting my work off until I get to that point.

In other words, I might wake up one day and really feel low on energy and motivation. So I might say to myself ‘one day won’t kill my dream,’I’ll make up for it tomorrow’ or ‘I’ll make up for it next week.’ Whatever the case, I might then feel that I don’t have to worry about my dream today because I still have a long time to work on doubling my income.

This is what will probably happen. I will end up trying to cram all the work I should have done long ago into a short amount of time because I’ve put it off so many times. Now, it is three months into my goal, and I’ve made so many excuses that I’ve gained nothing.

By then I will find that time is running short and that I need to rush which will be a stressful situation and I want to avoid that at all cost. The idea is to have less stress and less work but to make more money, easier.

But then life gets in the way.

Maybe I’ll get ill, perhaps I experience a family emergency, or maybe my routine changes and I no longer have the time for all the things I need to do to double my income. And now I find myself falling even further behind.

In the end, I will have realised that I’m never going to achieve my goal in time, I will feel greatly disheartened, and I will ultimately end up giving up on my goal altogether.

The problem with this goal was that it was:

  • Too long term
  • Too unstructured
  • Too out of my hands

So, I will have to restructure the writing and execution of my goal.

Instead, my goal is now to find a new strategy for increasing my income in some or other way on YouTube every week for 52 weeks. It cannot just end there, I have to implement it to see if it will work in South Africa and then report back on this blog every week. I will then have to learn a lot about Social Media for Real Estate which will help me, in the long run, to create the income I want for my retirement.

That is now a much more straightforward, simple to understand goal that I can follow through with, and the process is entirely within my hands. It is also easily achievable. I hope!

Whether I double my income might not be in my control if I do not follow a strategy that will require me to do something every day that will bring me closer towards my goal little by little.

Following a set plan with daily tasks towards achieving my goal is a lot easier.

It means this is entirely within my control.

Better yet, it is immediate. And it is either pass or fail. I either completed the tasks set out or I didn’t!

That means I can’t say ‘I’ll make up for it next week’ because by that point I’ve failed my goal on that day. It is a straightforward goal that I either accomplish or fail to achieve. And if I do fail, I can try again tomorrow with no need to be overly disheartened by it.

The best part is that if I concentrate on these smaller goals, then my overall vision will start to take care of itself. I will focus on the day-to-day grind, and I can let the bigger picture grow on its own.

I will Create Three Goals and Will Go After Them

The key for me is to identify which smaller steps are going to be most effective in helping me to reach my broader goals and visions. How do I break my objective down into small goals that I can follow through on?

It means coming up with a plan, and that means creating a road map.

I have a passion for what I’m doing now, so the next step is to make sure that everything I’m doing in life is going to be supportive of that passion.

I might be working on a task I don’t like right now, but that task should be helping me to get closer to the lifestyle I want. It should be part of my plan.

I have to consider making sure that the goal I’m heading towards is something that I can personally accomplish and to work with the resources I have available to me.

I just cannot make the mistake of thinking that I can’t do the things I want to do.

The key is to work out how I can get to the point where I want to be from where I am right now.

I will need to think of alternative ways to get what I want that play to my strengths. A great example of someone who did this is Sylvester Stallone. He wanted to be an actor in Hollywood movies, but no one would give him the opportunity.

His slurred speech and muscular frame ensured that he was only ever cast in small parts as the ‘heavy’ and so he had to find another way to get the parts he wanted to play. What he did to accomplish this was to create a script for a film (he was a great screenwriter). This was how he used his strengths (screenwriting) to get what he wanted which was to become a Hollywood Actor. That film, of course, was Rocky, and film producers and studios were so excited by it that they offered him vast amounts of money to buy the rights.

But Stallone was steadfast, and he said he would only let them have the rights if he could star in the film as Rocky. The studios were reluctant, but eventually, they relented – and the rest is history!

Likewise, Arnold Schwarzenegger took a highly unlikely path in his career, becoming a famous bodybuilder before using that platform to springboard himself to success as a movie star and eventually a politician.

I have skills and contacts and I have already made some progress. I have to decide what would be the most strategic way for me to accomplish my goals and work toward them.

Choosing Three Goals

Looking at my predominant vision I have to ask myself what small but real changes I need to make to my life to get a bit closer to making my dreams and goals a reality.

What do I need to change, and how do I need to change it to get what I want? I might start with something significant – figuring out if being a Real Estate agent is what I really wanted for myself.

I decided that since I am working at a Real Estate Company that allows me to make money from 6 different avenues instead of just one (which are all related to real estate) I could concentrate on something else than just selling property. I figured out that if I could sell fewer properties I will have more time working on expanding my team and show them how I sell properties working fewer hours so I can have more time for my family and friends.

This decision will take me one step closer to my dream lifestyle.

This is my ‘Step One.’

I now have to turn these into simple goals that I can work toward daily. I should keep these goals short-term, pass-fail, and keep them entirely within my control.

Doubling my income in the next 12 months is not a goal in itself because it is mostly outside my control and destined for potential disappointment.

Instead, my first goal should be to find a way to increase my income every week and to automate the system I have created. If automation is not part of the process I will just make more work for myself and then I will end up right where I started from, which is working all the time with no time to relax and visit with my friends and family.

It will have to be something that is entirely in my control and that I can easily accomplish. Hopefully,  the ‘double my income part’ will take care of itself if I just focus on this small step.

My second goal is to create at least one video every week to explain what I did for the week and how it brought me closer to my goal if any. Video is the marketing tool of the now and the future so I need to learn how to do it fast and professionally. This is a big step!

I will have to include a personal goal which I think should be a health and fitness goal. I will either do 10 000 steps per day for 5 days of every week or 6 000 steps and 15 minutes of Pilates. I have managed to do that for a few years now but I am going to also decrease my carbs intake by 80% every day. So, no bread, rice, or potatoes. No sugary drinks, cakes or sweets. No takeaways either.

Three is a perfect starting point for me because it will bring about some real change in my lifestyle, but it won’t require too much commitment or too much of a difference in my daily routine.

I am committed to making it happen!