I have found that setting smart goals will help you to make money and be more successful faster, than if you don't create and write down anything. Whether you want to start a business, lose weight, or learn a skill, or what every, you need goals!
Creating goals help you to develop a blueprint for you. This blueprint will often help you through the difficult times because you have an ultimate destination. When setting goals, the best thing to remember is to follow the acronym also known as SMART Goal:
S - for Specific: The more specific the goal the better. Your goal might be: "I want to be rich". Certainly a goal, but not a specific goal. In this case you might want to want to say: I will have a net worth of $1 million.
This is much more specific than the first example. There is a tangible number that you can strive for. This goal of $1 million is measurable, unlike the first goal, which leads to the next part of a SMART Goal.
M - for Measurable: It is hard to really determine if you reach your goal if you can't measure your success. In the last example, it is difficult to know when you achieve the goal of being rich, but you can easily calculate when your net worth reaches and exceeds $1 million.
Another goal that is specific and measurable could be: I earn $100,000 of income from Jan 1/XX to Dec 31/XX. This goal is specific. $100,000 is specific and measurable, and there is a specific time frame. How would you accomplish this? A question, that will lead us to the next part of a SMART Goal.
A - for Attainable & Actionable: Is your Goal Attainable? Can you achieve this goal? Makeing a goal that is attainable is important. Your goal should be a stretch. You need to work to achieve it, but it must be attainable, or you may stop trying!
When setting goals, it important to consider whether the goal is actionable? If you are setting goals that create actions to achieve the goals, then yes. If you are currently earning $20,000 per year and you have a goal of earning $100,000 this year, then what actions are you going to take to do this?
Perhaps you are a commission sales person and selling a couple more widgets would help you accomplish this. If so, then this goal is actionable. If you are currently earning an hourly salary, working 40 hours per week and making $20,000 in a year.
The goal of earning $100,000 might be actionable but perhaps not for a few years from now. This then brings up the next part of the SMART Goal.
R - for Relevant & Realistic: A relevant goal is a something that is important to you. Your goals should be somthing that you have passion about. Something that you want to achieve. Setting relevant and realistic goals is really important to achieveing success.
I have found that if a goal is set too high, if it is not achievable, the goal can often be de-motivating. A realistic goal should push you to move outside your comfort zone a little, but shouldn't frustrate you. I would suggest that you can make any goal, no matter how big, realistic if you set the correct time frame.
Earning $100,000 over the next 365 days might not be realistic for someone who is currently working part time earning $9/hour, but it could certainly be realistic and achievable if the goal was modified to 3 or 5 years from now. Again, moving us to the last part of the SMART Goal.
T - for Timely: When setting goals, setting a time frame for your goals is also key to success. "I have a net worth of $1 million by December 31/XX" is a good goal. It is specific, is measurable, is actionable, is realistic, provided the time frame is reasonable.
After you set your SMART Goals, then it is time to create action plans to achieve them.
A couple of TIPS to set SMART goals:
Write down your goals! I can't say more. There was a research study done with graduates of a prestigious University. 20 years after graduating, the income and net worth of these graduates were compared. Those who earned more, and had a higher net worth all wrote down their goals. The differences in income and net worth were substantial! Always write down your goals.
When writing down a personal goal, write it in first person. For Example:
A GOAL SETTING Exercise
One exercise that I have done and found very helpful was to write my goals twice a day, every day for 30 days. The first step is to either purchase a notepad, or use one you might have around the house. When you wake up in the morning, write down your top 10 goals. Make them first person, as described above and write 3 actions that you could take today to move you closer to this goal. Do this for each goal.
In the evening, go to a new page and write down your top 10 goals again, but don't look at the goals from first thing in the morning. On day 2, again don't look at your goals from the first day. Write down your top 10 goals and write 3 action plans for each goal.
Example of a goal and action plan:
This exercise creates amazing results! Try it. Let me know your results
Are you looking to start your own business and want to understand what is involved. Visit our Starting Your Own Business Section!
Perhaps you want to learn how to Make Money Fast? Check out this section!
Do you like to write? Do you love to express yourself and your opinion? Perhaps you want to Make Money Blogging?
Start a business selling stuff on eBay. Learn how in this section.
Looking for Money Making Ideas? We have a whole bunch of ideas here and we are always adding more. Check it out!