5 Reasons to Write Goals Down

Most of my early life I hated writing things down.  I fought hard to avoid any kind of writing.  It is humorous that now I wish I had more time to write things down.  I enjoy writing now.  As I get older I realize more and more how important it is to write things down.

via gregwake, Flickr

One of the most important things you can write down are your goals.  In previous posts, I have told you the areas of life to set goals and I told you how to make them SMART goals.  In this post, I want to give you 5 reasons why I write down my goals.

  1. So I do not forget them.  I make sure to carry a pen and piece of paper with me everywhere I go.  I do this largely because I never know when I might get an idea that I don’t want to forget.  I am sure to write it down and keep it with me until I get to my moleskine notebook to properly record it.
  2. To make them real.  Until I write something down, it is just an idea.  It has no substance.  It has no plan.  Once I write it down, I can start working on a process to make it happen.
  3. To make myself believe it.  I spoke to a great artist the other day about her plan to start a new business.  I told her that I thought it was a great idea.  One of the issues she had been that she didn’t really think that she was great artist.  It seems like this is a common occurrence.  People take for granted the things that they are good at, because that is just what they do.  By writing a goal down, I can let it start sinking into my head that it is possible, and I am good enough.
  4. To see progress.  By writing my goals down I can see not only where I am going but where I have come from.  I can see things on my list that I have accomplished.  I can know that I am, in fact, making progress.
  5. To make it worth fighting for.  If I believe in something enough to write it down, I am a lot more likely to fight through resistance to accomplish it.  It is easy to quit these days.  It is easy to come up with excuses to stop pursuing goals.  Fighting for something is not easy.  Writing it down contributes to the conviction in me to stay strong in my pursuit.

Some of the goals in my life that I have accomplished are:  marrying a good Christian woman, having children, seeing my children saved, owning a home, and to lose 60 pounds.  I trust that if you too write your goals down, it will help.

Do you write your goals down?  What are some additional reasons why you do so?

8 Areas Where You Need To Set Goals

My last post dealt with the importance of having SMART goals.  Today, I would like to give you 8 areas where you need to set goals.

via .Jac.’s photostream

This list may not include every area where you have goals, but these are the major areas that I have identified in my own life.  Some of these areas obviously overlap, when in doubt put them in every category they apply.  The more you write them down, the more cemented in your heart they will become.

  1. Spiritual Goals– My relationship with God is the most important area of my life.  Every area of my life flows through this area.  It is my belief that God given goals will not conflict.  Therefore, I feel this is the very first place to start creating goals.  The very first spiritual goal that I believe everyone should be saved and to have a close and personal relationship with God.  After this, some goals may involve Bible reading, prayer, Ministries in your church, and donating time and/or money to an outreach or mission.
  2. Family Goals– One family goal that I had is to see my two children become saved.  I am blessed to have seen that already, and at a young age.  My next goal is to see them increase in the knowledge and understanding of God and for them to serve Him throughout their life.  Some other family goals may include: family devotions, vacations, having children, adopting children, providing opportunities to learn, buying a new house, and having set dinner times where everyone gets together.
  3. Career Goals– There are times when your company sets career goals for you.  This is a good start.  However, it is important to have your own goals surrounding your career as well.  Whether it be a promotion, increasing sales, improving systems, increasing reach, or improving profits, these goals are essential to not becoming complacent in the current position you hold.
  4. Financial Goals–  This a big one for most people.  Financial goals are the life the blood to goals in every category.  My first financial goal is to be debt free.  This goal, if you are not currently there is probably the first one you should have as well.  All other financial goals start with having the cash required to be free from financial constraints.  Other financial goals that you may have may be to set up a college fund for your children, buying a luxury item that you are not currently able to afford, to be able to give anonymous gifts to those in need, to invest your money in areas where it can grow, or to create residual income streams.
  5. Physical Health Goals–  It is said that you spend the first half of your life trying to create wealth to the detriment of your health, and the last half of your life using your wealth to regain your health.  Unfortunately, this is all too true for many people.  I hope to be able to keep my health while furthering my wealth.  These goals may look like eating properly, drinking more water, exercising 3-5 times per week, competing in a marathon or triathlon, or just beating your wife in a personal challenge to log the most miles in a month (I currently have this goal!).
  6. Learning Goals– I was having a conversation with a gentleman the other day who informed me that he had already been through high school and college, therefore he didn’t really need to learn anything else.  In my opinion this guy is destined for failure.  If you don’t have any goals in personal growth, development, and learning you can never improve any area of your life.  Now maybe he was just speaking to formal education, but I think this is a dangerous mindset to have.  Some of the learning goals I have are to read 2-3 non-fiction books per month, listen to personal development podcasts, read informative blogs, and attend conferences where I can learn new strategies for bettering myself.  Like showering, learning has to occur daily to be effective.
  7. Social Goals–  These goals would deal with how you interact with other people.  They could include your extended family, friends, co-workers, waitresses, and everyone else that you meet.  A social goal that I have is to leave every person I meet a little happier than they were when I met them.  Sometimes this is not possible.  All you can do is commit to it, carry it out everyday.
  8. Creative Goals–  Creative goals would be the goals that you have in whatever kind of art you enjoy.  Creativity can be used in any aspect of your life from work to recreation.  Whether you paint, play music, play football, write, build models, golf, or whatever it is that will lessen your stress, it is important to have goals.
Goals inspire you to carry on.  Goals help you feel you are moving forward.  Goals give your life additional purpose.  If you do not have a goal to move toward, you are not moving forward.  If you are not moving forward, you are moving backward.  So set your goals, then move toward them.
Are there other areas where you set goals?  What is your favorite area to set goals in?


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