How To Set Goals That Actually Matter

I’ve always been a goal setter. Whether it was accomplishing certain feats of fitness, attempting to become a better saver, or even something as simple as a first ____ (car, tattoo, etc.), you could count on me to write it down and look forward to it.

Have I always accomplished my goals?

Heck no.

I’m human, and we’ll save the ups and downs of actually ACCOMPLISHING goals for another story, another post. However, you know what the first step of accomplishing a goal is?

Actually. Setting. One.

I recently graduated college, and as I’m prepping to move and transition into a new chapter, I was hit with a scary thought:

“Kelvey, do you actually have any goals?”

Sure, I had ambiguous dreams and ideas floating through my head, but goals? Not really. All the goals I had set sort of were left behind in the college era, and I was looking forward into young, single adulthood with really no direction other than where I was going to be starting work and living.

So, I decided to set some. If you’re stuck or lacking worthwhile goals like I was, here’s the process:


1. THINK about what you want to accomplish + what you’re passionate about.


I literally pulled out a notebook, and wrote the following two questions:

What am I passionate about?

What do I want to accomplish?

I took some time to think about it, and then I started writing (which leads to step two).


2. WRITE it all out.


I started scrawling lists underneath those questions. Start with where you’re passionate, and don’t be afraid to include WHATEVER, no matter how big or small. Christ was on my list, but so were plants and dogs and travel.

Once you’ve established the list of things you’re passionate about, think about what you want to accomplish. Big or small: paying off debt, attaining a certain academic level or career position, traveling, whatever. If it fires you up and you want to go after it, WRITE IT DOWN.


3. BREAK it down.


Now that you know what you’re passionate about and what you want to use your life to accomplish, you can break things down by creating goals that lead somewhere. I broke my goals down in the following segments: 10 year, 5 year, 3 year, 1 year, 6 months (so, end of 2018), and 2 months (so, basically the summer).

Start with the furthest goals, and write them down. Want to own a house in 10 years? Great, mark it down. Then, step backwards. What do you need to do to accomplish that goal by 5 years? 3 years? 1 year? Work backwards to create the necessary changes.

Obviously, you won’t be that far out for all goals. Some goals I set for myself will be accomplished by the end of the year, and some are set to be tackled by 5 years. Yet, the concept of working backwards still applies.


4. MAKE the necessary changes.


Finally, you have to adjust your life to match your goals. Nothing will be accomplished unless you make the necessary changes. So, go join that gym, schedule workouts, and meal prep to lose those pounds. Cut out unnecessary spending and double down on expenses to pay off debt.

You have the passion, and you have your eyes fixed on something that you want to attain. Make moves and see it happen.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s