Wheres The Map, I Think Im Lost!!

By: Jill Lambert

How many times have you begun the year with grand ideas of things you needed to do? The calendar changes a little bit, and we have this sense of a new beginning. You know what I'm talking about, those silly things we call "New Year's Resolutions".

"New Years Resolutions", okay I confess I've made a few in my lifetime too. And, it always seems I can't remember them on January 5th!

What if there was a way to get you on the right path on January 1, and keep you there year after year? Sounds too good to be true, right? Well it's not. I know you've heard this before, but here it goes again. We all need to have written goals.

A written goal is not just an idea in your head. It's not a dream or a wish. That's not the kind of goal we're talking about. Take the hopes and good intentions out of your mind, and analyze what you can realistically accomplish. How much hard work and determination are you willing to expend?

Working hard and setting goals applies to you, no matter what your situation. If you are a parent that needs to begin a savings plan for your child's college education, you need goals! If you are interested in buying your first home, or maybe upgrading from the home you have, you need goals! If you're just getting starting, or are an online pro in marketing a product on the internet, you need goals! Goal setting is a must to get you on the right path! Think of your goals as your road map!

I bet you can't tell me the characteristics of what a goal should be.

Let's take a look:

1. It should be USEFUL. Think of you goal as a bridge, a way to get from where you are, to where you want to be.

2. It should be TIME-LIMITED. Each phase of your goal needs a deadline. Without a deadline, you'll keep traveling the same road, probably the one you're on now.

3. IT should be SPECIFIC. Don't say, "I want to go to San Francisco." Say, "I'm going to San Francisco, and the first thing I need to do is get on I-40 and travel west."

4. It should be MEASURABLE. If it isn't measurable, how will you gauge your progress? Determine how far you'd like to "travel" each day. Set a specific goal for how many "miles" you'll cover.

5. It should be CHALLENGING. Pushing yourself and continuing to grow is a wonderful feeling. Do things you thought you'd never do before, you'll be amazed at the adrenaline rush you'll get!

6. It should be ACTION oriented. State all of your goals in an active sense. "I will do....."

7. Finally, it must be ATTAINABLE or REALISTIC. Do you have, or can you get the skills necessary to reach the goal?

We've covered the characteristics of goals with the exception of the most important part. You have to write them down. The difference between a goal and a dream is seeing it on paper.

You'll be amazed how clear things will be to you when you see them on paper. I'm not sure of the science behind the difference of just thinking about something, and putting a pen to paper. They say it has something to do with the sub-conscious, but I know it works!

If you're really serious about establishing goals for yourself, check out this website: http://www.goalpro.com This is a really neat software that will help you establish your goals, and keep you on track.

As you go through the next couple of days see if you can remember your "Resolutions" from last year. I'd make a pretty high wager you can't. Use the information in this articleComputer Technology Articles, and next year you'll be sending me an e-mail telling me what wonderful things you've accomplished! Happy Goal Setting.

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