One of the most fundamental yet vital personal development activities is goal setting. You may be surprised at how big a difference goals can make in your endeavors. Let me discuss this topic with you and hopefully you will see why that is so.
Now the first thing I want to harp on is that goals provide you with a sense of direction. Without goals, you could end up lost in your journey. In fact, without goals, your journey could be really pointless. Let me give you an illustration. Think of two opposing soccer teams who are playing soccer on a field without goal posts. What would the motive of the game be if there are no goal posts? Now when you put two sets of goal posts on to the field, you give each of the teams a purpose, which is to score as many goals as they can to win the game. Basically, what I am saying is this. If you have no goals, you cannot be a winner, and therefore, that makes you a loser. Doing other personal development activities would hence be futile without an end destination.
Besides giving you an end destination, goals can also help guide you along the way. Let me give you another illustration. Let’s say you went trekking, and you lost your way. You know where you want to go, but you need a compass to bring you to your final destination. What can we learn from this illustration? It is important to have a long term goal, but it is also just as important to have short term goals, or what I like to call milestones. If you break down your long term goal into milestones, achieving that long term goal will not seem like such a daunting task, and it will help you with your other personal development activities as well.
Besides having a long term goal and breaking that up into smaller milestones, I also suggest that you write your goals down and put them in a place where you will always be able to see them. When you write your goals down, you show that you are committed to attaining them, and whenever you find that you’re lost, you can always look back at them to get some motivation. Besides, committing to them to memory isn’t very effective because as humans, we do forget.