Created on: January 28, 2013
Many people are motivated by setting goals because this allows them to become personally committed to attaining something which they can see is realistic and achievable, within a given time frame. People who set goals in life are more likely to be successful, because of the direct link between the goal and what is needed to achieve it.
Goal setting is effective for increasing motivation, because the eventual outcome relies on performance. For example, when a decision is made to improve physical fitness, or to lose some weight, it is necessary to define a set of health goals that focus on what can be achieved through diet and exercise. A decision concerning a career might require a particular set of education goals, while financial planning would need both money-making and money-saving goals. Setting a goal provides a firm direction about what needs to be done and how much effort is required to be put in.
Life goals should always be written down and kept constantly in mind, with full consideration given to how the projected outcome will be achieved.
Goal setters are encouraged to be “smart”, which is an acronym for specific, measurable, attainable, realistic (or relevant) and timely (or time-framed). A goal will be easier to attain if it meets all these requirements.
Being specific brings a goal into focus. Measurable means that progress towards the goal can be identified step by step. Attainable means that the person who sets the goal knows that success is definitely possible. A realistic or relevant goal means that the person already has the ability, or can acquire the ability, to achieve that goal. A time-based goal (timely or time-framed) means that a timetable can be set towards a final deadline.
Setting life goals
Setting a goal is more than simply making a decision. A goal has to be based on a desired outcome, something to be achieved by a specific date. The present situation is of less importance than the desire to reach a solution, or to attain a positive outcome. This is what provides the motivation for people to go ahead with planning on how to reach their goals.
Goal setting provides greater satisfaction from what can be achieved in life. There is more satisfaction to be gained from attaining a difficult goal than there is in hitting an easy target, but each success helps to builds confidence, and success with small goals increases motivation for achieving something bigger or better in future.
Goal Setting Theory
Goal Setting Theory is a label, originally clined by psychologists when referring to research done by Dr. Edwin Locke in the 1960s. Goal setting is now widely used in business as a method of motivating employees. Successful entrepreneurs have used goal setting as a means to building a business empire. The theory of goal setting motivation also applies outside of the workplace, because it allows people to achieve what they want in life.
Setting goals motivates people because having a life goal helps psychologically towards achieving success. The higher or harder the goal, the more motivation there is to attain it through personal performance, provided it is a "smart" goal that clearly projects a desired outcome.
Learn more about this author, Ruth Belena.
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