Dreams need Goals
Welcome to a new year! During this time of transition, many people reflect on the past year’s successes and failures. Often, we reassess our strengths, our shortcomings, what we wish had been better, and what improved along the way. Resolutioners dream about what they want for the upcoming year, and may even recommit to the previous year’s goals.
Dream big, but don’t let it stop there. We encourage you to set aside some time to really put thought into the areas of your life you’d like to improve. Whether you are focused on your career, family life, relationships, fitness, or anything else, give yourself the best chance for a positive trajectory.
Goals need Plans
Even if you view this as just another date on the calendar, there’s no time like the present to assess your goals and have a clear plan to get there. Our taekwondo philosophy revolves around “constant and neverending improvement” of yourself and consequently, the world around you. This doesn’t happen without intention. This blog will offer some tips on how to create a thorough plan.
Plans require Action
After assessing your “why” and “how”, it’s your responsibility to enact the plan. The world’s best coach, nutrition team, psychologist, or business mentor can’t make your dreams come true if you’re not willing to put in the work. Build a habit that puts you closer to your goal each day. To quote another line from our philosophy, “even the most average of people can achieve excellence through a positive work habit.”
There are many ways to set, plan, and meet goals. A simple and effective starting point begins by brainstorming with the SMART technique.
SMART Goals are:
First, determine why you are seeking that particular goal. What are you wanting to accomplish and why? When you start getting specific, it makes you have to assess whether the goal you’ve set is the correct one.
Can you scientifically or accurately assess your progress? If your career goals are to become the “go-to” guy in your field, find a way to track the speed and accuracy of your work. Keep and write down your data, to track yourself along the way.
If you are seeking to get stronger, track how much weight and how many reps you do currently, and be sure to get your 1 rep max at the beginning of your journey. Steps like these allow you to track your progress in a way that lets you know when you’ve actually accomplished your goal (and gives you feedback along the way of how close you are).
Aim high, but be real and honest with yourself. If you’re 50 years old and get winded walking to the mailbox, becoming a running back in the NFL is just not going to happen. You must already have or (realistically) be able to gain the skills needed for your goal. If your goal is going to take years to achieve, be sure to set “stepping stone” benchmarks along the way.
Perhaps you’re setting a goal to open your own business. Do you already have the resources to do so? If not, you have a few steps to go before reaching your ultimate goal. Again, be honest about where you’re at in your journey and understand what is and is not achievable in the time period you’ve given yourself.
The best goals are ones that excite you! This is your WHY. Ask yourself why this is important to you. If you don’t achieve the goal, what changes? If you DO achieve the goal, what changes then? Thinking about the end result should give you a sense of joy, fulfillment, or accomplishment. Will you benefit from each of the steps along the way? Again, it is imperative that you get very honest with yourself in answering these questions.
This is the easiest to understand, but one of the hardest to answer. Some time frames are chosen for you. If you want to run a full marathon, and the race day is October 1st, you know that’s the deadline for 26.2 miles. Others are more vague. For ongoing timelines, give yourself small checkpoints along the way that can help ensure you’re on the right track. How much time throughout your week are you able/willing to focus on enacting your plan?
BE DELIBERATE. BE INTENTIONAL.
Spend some time setting your goals and planning how to get there. Realize that you may have to reassess along the way, and give yourself time to do so. You may find that with a well thought out plan, you make progress more quickly than expected. Adjust and adapt as needed. Build consistency and good habits, and enjoy the fruits of your labor! There are many resources that offer more information on SMART goal setting, but we hope this will give you a head start on building your future.
“A dream written down with a date becomes a goal. A goal broken down becomes a plan. A plan backed by action makes your dream a reality.”