Goal setting being one of the few themes that has been discussed to the lengths of exhaustion when it comes to personal development, I decided to make a series of articles about it. And when it comes to the question of why this subject if it is already saturated, and after all why the format of series of articles, let’s get the obvious out of the way and say that, first and foremost, it needs some variety in approach.
People react to different triggers and offering a one-model-fits-all type of thinking is outdated every which way you try to spin it; Hence the need for a series of articles as to give different ideas on goal setting and offer something more than the usual exercise in frustration.
I also write this post partially for myself, considering the fact that what worked before may not work in the future, or vice versa; A log of trial and error, if you will.
Skipping the usual introduction on the subject, saying why goals are important, and sparing you from the over recited gospel on the foundation of personal development and whatnot, I think it is better that I start with one of the methods of goal setting right away.
So here it goes…
Paying attention to every aspect of life comes down to macro management. In other words, it’s not that much about scrutinizing over every detail, as it is about balancing things out. And it works for most people.
The day is divided into sections, each one dedicated to managing separate segments of your daily life.
It’s not like you have someone behind you cracking the whip, forcing you to stay accountable; when you think about it, it’s more like you being put into a box with little to no choice as for what to dedicate your time to. The thing is though that you are the one choosing the boxes, and the content inside them.
You divide your day on things like work, time with friends, time with family, time for yourself if you are lucky enough, time for everything else when you think about it. And that’s the macro management part. And while this is still all about time management and not goals setting, stay with me, we are getting there.
The thing is that just as it is with time management, where you plan things on a broader scale and then just follow your already set scenario, same applies when it comes to setting goals.
You see, instead of chasing goals all over the place, you decide to divide things into logical and similar context and follow more easily.
The methodology behind this technique
As for this method to work you need to think some steps ahead on the road. In short, you set goals that are bigger and more complex, and comprise smaller more tangible ones.
As for example you can set your goals when it comes to getting promoted, improving your relationships with others, looking better, learning more and whatever you set your mind to.
Then, you just find more tangible and somewhat easier to accomplish goals in each and every category and try to reach them.
This is the concept of macro managing your goals. It is more organized, more affordable in terms of commitment when you think on the long run, and more efficient than most by a huge margin.
For who and why this goal setting method is likely to work?
The answer is very easy to hint at. As the description so far goes, it’s non-intrusive before anything else. That alone proves appealing to people who do not respond that well to strict deadlines, checklists, constant micro management.
It will work, as I’m strongly convinced, even better for people who are creative and need the space to function freely and without being constantly interrupted.
The fact that you choose the smaller, more tangible goals is enough to suggest that this method develops over time, organically, hence adapting to your taste and your needs.
As they change, it changes. And since in most cases the ability to adapt your lifestyle according to new habits is never sustainable, this proves a real jewel. I mean, you have the directions, the bigger, more complex goals, and as time and occasion dictates you prioritize accordingly.
The fear that you will procrastinate on your smaller goals connected to the bigger picture is easy to understand, and when you think about it not every individual can perform without the fear of the whip and self-imposed regime, but some function way better in such surrounding than others.
This goal setting method in practice
So as to give a try on this goal setting method, just decide about three things you want to dedicate and devote yourself to (something that can be accomplished in, say three to four months), and only browse your thoughts for a while on how that can go down to more tangible, easy to accomplish checkpoints. Once you do that, it’s a day to day, week to week journey.
So, as to break the ice, let me share mine categories.
- Finalizing my internet marketing projects
- getting in better health and shape
- learning a lot of new stuff via reading
- enjoying spare time more
Then, in a nutshell, this is how the second tier looks like:
As for my internet marketing projects I dedicate couple of hours daily, add some hours more to reading blogs, watching the industry change by the day… As for the second category – getting in better health and shape, I try to eat as healthy as I can day after day, and I work out with what is considered the hardest workout put on DVD – Insanity: The Asylum.
When it comes to learning via books, I dedicate one hour to reading, especially nonfiction, and follow couple of blogs daily. Which leaves me with enjoying spare time more; here I try to organize having more experiences instead of just randomly spending my time. I go and ride my bike in the forest on weekends, hike, go swimming, go outside as much as I can. The goals change slightly from time to time, but for now that’s pretty much it.
Some people are way more busy than I am, some are less; some are quite more ambitious, some not that much; some are in the need to juggle in between myriad of goals, others go and create responsibilities out of the need of having some…
Whatever your daily schedule looks like, and regardless the type of person you consider yourself to be, this method can really work. If not, you will at least see how you react on flexible ground and what comes first to mind when you try to prioritize on various segments of your life.
Now think about it for a second and try to scale things down to three or four main segments you need to achieve or improve. You will be amazed by the results.