Goal setting is something that you’re probably used to doing at work. Whether it’s aspiring to achieve monthly targets or to gain confidence when public speaking, objectives can be a big part of a career. However, creating objectives isn’t just something that should be done at work – it applies to everyday life too. So, why is goal setting important? Read on to find out about why you should be setting development goals in all walks of life.
What is a Goal?
A goal is an aim or desired result; the object of your ambition or effort. Perhaps your goal is to run a marathon next year or save enough money to buy a house. Anything that requires determination to achieve a desired result is a goal. Personal objectives make the most of your life potential and encourage you to strive for more. Examples of personal goals can range from improving your confidence, moving to a new city or starting a fitness regime. It can be anything that you want to achieve and is more often accomplished when it’s labelled as a goal, rather than just a passing thought.
The Importance of Goal Setting
So, why set goals? There are many reasons. Ultimately, there is no better feeling than knowing you’ve achieved something you’ve been aiming towards. Volunteering or becoming a cadet at the Army Cadet Force can push you towards achieving your goal.
Here are six reasons why it’s important to take part in personal goal setting.
Setting Goals Gives You Focus
If you don’t have anything to aim for, then subsequently you won’t feel like you’ve achieved anything. Creating goals provides a sense of direction and something to strive for. It also tells you what to spend valuable energy on and what is less important. Personal goals help us believe in ourselves and push us to work towards achieving something every day. Throughout school, university and work, high achievers are where they are because they get results from the goals they set. We’re constantly setting goals – whether it’s a simple to-do-list for the day or quarterly targets, we do our best to meet them. It’s the same principle when you have personal ambitions.
Once you know what your goals are, you can measure your progress. You can note how you’ve done and if you need to change anything. Many personal objectives, such as becoming more confident and making new friends, can be easily measured. Have you put yourself out there? Have you joined clubs? If yes and it worked – brilliant! If not, you can look back at where you may have missed opportunities or could have done things differently. Goals allow you to reflect on negatives as well as positives, and then try again or re-evaluate where necessary.
Rather than sitting back and letting life happen you should set goals to put you firmly in control. Sitting yourself down and establishing objectives means you’re proactively taking charge. If you’re unhappy in your occupation, set a goal that ensures you’re taking the right steps towards finding a new job. If you want to become more of a leader, set objectives to take on certain tasks that are above what you are required to do. There will never be change in your life unless you take control and make them happen.
Setting goals makes you accountable for achieving them. When you know you have a responsibility to act on something - you act on it. This is no different when setting yourself personal goals – you’ll feel that you have an obligation to act on these targets and avoid failure. Obviously, it is okay if life gets in the way of you pursuing your goal and you shouldn’t be hard on yourself - but knowing that you’re responsible will urge you to chase what you want to achieve.
Unachievable Dreams Are Turned into Realities
Sometimes it may seem that your expectations are too high and therefore unachievable. Appointing yourself plenty of smaller goals can break what appears to be a huge challenge into smaller, more achievable stepping stones. For example, you want to save £15,000 for a deposit on a house. Saving a certain amount each month is achievable, and you’ll be more likely to end up with the desired outcome. Research shows that hitting smaller milestones provides a greater sense of achievement, and gives you added motivation.
Know What You Really Want
A year ago, you may have aspired to own a particular car, get a new job or lose a certain amount of weight. You may now have achieved these goals and feel deflated, as it didn’t make you as happy as you thought it would. This can be disappointing but is also a positive; if you don’t set goals you may never learn what you truly want. Find out where to start and how to set your goals.
The Army Cadet Force provides a place for adventure, learning, development and personal achievement. Our cadets and adult volunteers visibly progress when they’re with us – whether that’s boosting their confidence, learning leadership skills, making physical improvements or experiencing adventurous activities. Whether you’re interested in joining as a cadet or adult volunteer, it can be the perfect environment to thrive in and help you achieve your goals. If you want to work on new qualifications or just meet new people, the ACF is the place to be.