Life Skills

What and Why Setting Goals are Important

Setting goals and priorities, and then following through with active plans to make them happen, is the essential process for turning dreams into reality.  Goals are basically your dreams written down with a solid plan to reach them.  The simple act of writing down what you want from life helps keep you focused and in control.  How your life pans out is entirely your choice—so write your goals out now, and create a plan to achieve them.

You have the ability to get whatever you want in life.  Setting goals may sound simple, but that simple action will make a tremendous impact on all areas of your life.

If you’ve ever aspired to be comfortably secure or financially independent—even to be a millionaire!—reaching those aspirations requires goal-setting.  Just like in sports, you can’t score without a goal, right?

Who Sets Goals?

Successful people have written goals.  It is a scientific fact that you will achieve a higher percentage of your goals if you can imagine the successful achievement of those goals.  When you write your goals down and use mental imagery to focus your thinking, you can actually rewire your brain so the neurons form new connections and make new pathways.  This helps you achieve a higher percentage of your goals.

Here’s a good example of how goal-setting can work:  Napoleon Hill was one of the first authors to enter the lucrative self-improvement market.  His book Think and Grow Rich has sold millions of copies and is now one of the best-selling books of all time.  Hill said, ―Anything the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve.‖  If you can imagine your goals and believe in yourself, you can reach them, too.

What are Goals?

Goals are important because they act as a guide that will help you live the life you desire.  To be truly happy in life—to succeed in your endeavors —you really need a clear sense of purpose and direction.  That’s what goals give you.

Ever been camping? Or watched a horror movie about hikers lost in the wilderness?

Without goals you’re just like a lost hiker.  With no sense of direction—no map, GPS, or compass—you cannot find your way.  But if you set and visualize important life goals, you’ll find that you already have the right tools to stay on course.  You’ll know exactly where you want to end up—instead of just wandering aimlessly!

Setting goals for financial planning and life success has many benefits, for example:

Motivation.  Goals motivate you. Your life is moving toward something instead of going nowhere.

Saving vs. Spending.  How much of your monthly paycheck should you save? How much should you spend on shoes?  Good questions—and without set goals, you might see your shoe racks flourish while your finances suffer.

Freedom.  Once you’ve set a goal—believe it or not—you become liberated from constantly worrying and wondering what you’re going to do with your life.  Plan and set goals when you’re young, or else wake up when you’re 65 years old and say, ―Hey! What happened to my life, my money, and my dreams? ‖

Goals give you a purpose in life, something to strive for.  Goals challenge you to reach your full potential.  So set specific objectives that you want to accomplish.  Think of your goals as dreams of where you want to be in the future.

So where do you want to be in five years?  Ten years?  Twenty years?

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