What is a Goal and How to Set Goals to be More Successful?

You probably hear people talk about goals from time to time.

“I want to lose a 30 pounds this month.”

“I want to get straight As on my report card this quarter.”

“My goal is to save $100,000 by the end of this year.”

Then, when you think about it, you might wonder, “what is a goal?” and “how to set a goal?”

The Dictionary Definition Of Goal

The word goal is used in a variety of ways. According to Dictionary.com, a goal is…

the result or achievement toward which effort is directed; aim; end.
the terminal point in a race.
a pole, line, or other marker by which such a point is indicated.
an area, basket, cage, or other object or structure toward or into which players of various games attempt to throw, carry, kick, hit, or drive a ball, puck, etc., to score a point or points.
the act of throwing, carrying, kicking, driving, etc., a ball or puck into such an area or object.
the score made by this act.
The definition we’re interested in is definition number 1.

“the result or achievement toward which effort is directed; aim; end.”

In other words, a goal is something that you wish to achieve. Some people might refer to it as their life purpose, others might refer to it as their aim. It’s something that you wish to accomplish, whether it is big or small. Goals can vary by time, by expectations, by level of difficulty, and by a lot of other factors.

NOTE – You don’t need to know what your life purpose is to set goals!

TIP – Don’t waste your time worrying about the definition of what a goal is or what is considered a goal. Just set it, and aim for it.

Short Term Vs Long Term Goals

It is important to know that there are different types of goals: short term goals and long term goals. In this scenario, these goals differ by time.

Short Term Goals – Goals that either last a short time or take a short amount of time to accomplish.

Example: Finish reading the book “The 7 Day Startup” in under a week. (By the way, I managed to do this recently. Great book by the way.)

Long Term Goals – Goals that either last a long time or take a long time to accomplish.

Example: Start a mobile app business and generate $200,000 in profit every year.

It doesn’t matter which one you choose to aim for. The important thing is that you decide to set goals and aim to accomplish it.

Related – 3 Things That Stop You From Achieving Your Goals

How To Set Goals?

Now that you know a little bit more about what goals are, you are probably wondering “how to set goals?” For some people, this might be an easy to do, while for others, this might take some time to think about.

TIP – Don’t overthink it.

There are a variety of ways to approach this. Here are some questions you can start answering to set goals:

  • What is something you want to change or accomplish.

  • What are some things you wish that would happen or wish that you had?

  • What are some things that you wish to improve upon? If so, what is it, and by when do you want it to happen?

  • What are some things that you want to do to live a better life? Why do you want it?

  • Is there something you feel like you can do to make the world a better place?

TIP – You can improve your chances of success in achieving a goal when you set a deadline.

Not only that, make sure the goal(s) that you set inspires you and motivates you. It should be something that should make you excited about. At the same time, don’t set goals that are too easy or too hard, otherwise you will not be committed.

How Does Setting Goals Make Me More Successful?

By setting goals, you have taken the first step or towards being more successful. How so? It depends on what you believe success is.

There are people out there who start debating about what success is – which is not a good thing to do since it will hinder you from achieving your goals.

Related: 25 Excuses That Prevent You From Being Successful

The definition of success depends on what you think of it as. Live life by what success means to you, and not by the definition of others.

TIP – Just do it.

Setting goals help you be more successful because it helps you do things that you want. Most of the time, your goals relate to what your definition of success is.

A majority of people see success as being rich. Others see it as being able to accomplish all or most of your goals. Again, don’t fuss over about the definition of success.

To succeed, you need to find something to hold on to, something to motivate you, something to inspire you. - Tony Dorsett

If you live life to be successful in the eyes of others, you are living up to their expectations, not yours. As long as you follow what you believe is being successful to you, you’ll do just fine.

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