Goals, Plan, Action...Go!
How a simple approach to goal setting can yield amazing results!
Have you ever made a New Years Resolution? How did that work out for you? If you are like most… not so well. Only 8% of people who set a New Years Resolution actually succeed! Studies show the reason is because most of us don’t write down our goals, or have a plan on how to actually achieve them.
People think they can set a goal, and it will magically happen… this is not the case. Setting Goals are easy! It’s the next steps that get you… the actually doing something about it! I follow a simple process that helps with not only setting goals, but actually achieving them. I call it GPA or Goals, Plan, Action…
Goals…what are they? In the simplest terms, goals are things we want. Goals can come in all shapes and sizes. For example, buying a house can be a goal. Going to the grocery store can also be a goal. Although, those two goals are very different, you achieve them using the same process. You need to set the goal…”I want to buy a house” or “I want to go to the grocery store today”. The goal is set!
Plan…Once you have made the goal, you need a roadmap on how to get there. With buying a house…you have to think about what kind of house you want, where you want to live, how much you can spend, etc. Going to the grocery store…you have to make time in your day, and to make sure you don’t forget anything, you may want to write a list. Now, you have a plan!
Action…finally, you need to take action in order to do anything! This seems to be the toughest part for most. You can plan all day long, but until you decide to actually take action, nothing gets done. Like calling a realtor for buying a house, or getting in your car to actually go to the store. Once you take the first action, just follow your plan.
Each element on their own is weak, but together GPA can conquer all! Have you ever put together a jigsaw puzzle? Each piece by themselves is useless and hard to understand, but put together, it creates a picture you could never see before. It is the same with the steps in achieving a goal. A goal by itself is great, but it’s just a want or a wish. A plan by itself is visually motivating, but can never be done without Action. Action by itself can be like going in circles hoping you end in the right spot.
Without a clear, defined goal or a plan, you don’t know what to do with the action. Put them all together and you have a synergistic formula that can do, and accomplish more than you ever thought possible.
If you are still not convinced that you need all three to truly succeed, let me leave you with this story. In 1979, Harvard MBA program asked a question: “how many of you have a clear, defined goal written down, and a plan of action on how you are going to achieve that goal?”3% said they had a goal, had it written down, and a clear plan of action on how to achieve that goal.
13% said they had a goal, but had not written it down.
84% said they didn’t have a goal.
Ten years later, they talked to those same people…
The 13% who had a goal, but did not write it down, were making twice as much as the 84% who had no goal.
The 3% who had a goal, wrote it down, and had a clear plan of action on how to achieve it, were making 10 times as much as the remaining 97% combined!
So, do yourself a favor…write down something you want (a goal). Write down how you can go about getting what you want (your plan). Finally, take some sort of action right away…no matter how small the action may seem, do it!