7 Key Strategies to Successful Goal Setting

Everyone has something they would love to accomplish one day, whether you want to run a certain distance, lift a certain weight in the gym or get those abs showing!
Having these ambitions is fantastic, but often the end point seems SO far away that it all becomes a little daunting – we think, “as if I could ever do that”, put the idea in the ‘too hard basket’ and dream about it again at a later date. The cycle repeats.

But it doesn’t have to be this way!


1. Adjust Your Thinking
Stop thinking of your goal as a distant, unfathomable dream!
It’s not just a dream, it’s a LONG-TERM GOAL that will become a reality with the right planning and support.
Stop that self-doubt “pffft there’s not way I could do that” thinking. Replace the doubt and daunt with excitement and motivation – imagine the exhilaration you’ll feel when you accomplish your goal!

2. Work Backwards to Create Short-term Goals
Start at your end point and break down your long-term goal into smaller goals, then create actionable steps to help you reach each of these smaller goals.

3. Be a SMART Goal Setter
For both your long-term and short-term goals use the following SMART strategy:
SSpecific: Don’t be vague, be as detailed as possible with what you want to achieve.
MMeasurable: Make sure you can measure your result, whether it be a distance in running, or a clothes size to aim for.
AAttainable: Short-term goals need to feel achievable.
RRelevant: Smaller goals need to be relevant to your long-term goal – like stepping stones to reach your long-term goal.
TTime-based: Set a specific date for when you want to achieve each goal.

4. Get support!
Get a coach, friend or partner to help you set goals and keep you accountable. You need someone by your side to support you when motivation is low, remind you what you are working for and to celebrate the accomplishment of all your smaller goals on the way to the big one! This is SO important – see our post on the Power of Support here.

5. Get visual!
Use a calendar, get photos of the event you want to do or the jeans you want to fit in to. Having these around you will keep you focused and inspired.

6. Be Ready to Make Adjustments
Life happens! If you don’t quite make your deadline have a setback, it’s okay! Be prepared to make adjustments to your plan and keep an open mind – just because it takes you longer than you anticipated doesn’t mean it’s not achievable at all!

7. Back Yourself!
This is possibly the most important strategy – have confidence in yourself and keep a positive mindset! Make sure your smaller goals are ‘attainable’ and use your visuals and support network to help you stay on track and keep your enthusiasm up.

For a couple of years I’ve had my eye on the Great Wall Marathon (annual event along the Great Wall of China). I have never been a natural runner, I have always found it very challenging physically and mentally. But for some reason I find myself drawn to this event – I HAVE to do it!
I can currently run around 10km non-stop, so I have a long way to go to make 42km along the Great Wall! But I know I can get there by using these strategies, staying dedicated and imagining that incredible feeling I will have when I reach the finish line!

So, what is that one thing you always dream about?
Even if it seems miles away step up, step out of your comfort zone and embrace the challenge!
Set goals, get inspired and turn your “one day” dreams into your triumphs.

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