Goal Setting for Personal Growth
"O Lord, may I be directed what to do and what to leave undone." – Elizabeth Fry
"Keep in mind that you are always saying 'no' to something. If it isn’t to the apparent, urgent things in your life, it is probably to the most fundamental, highly important things. Even when the urgent is good, the good can keep you from your best, keep you from your unique contribution, if you let it." – Helen Keller
These wise women remind us that our lives are full of choices, not just choices of what to do, but choices of what to put aside. How we make these decisions about action or inaction, attention or purposeful turning away is based on our personal goals and our understanding of how our personal priorities fit into our overall mission in life.
For those areas that we have determined are within our responsibility as leaders, the use of effective goal setting will help us accomplish meaningful work. Goals can be lofty and unrealistic targets that we are unlikely to reach, or they can be celebrated as achievable and measurable. To avoid frustration in goal setting, use the SMART criteria to ensure that your goals are:
Realistic and Relevant
Personal reflection on goal setting:
How do you feel about goal setting?
What are you so passionate about that it does not feel like a chore? What is one goal you can set related to your passion?
If you are feeling overwhelmed with the thought of reaching that goal, what can you leave undone in your life?
Do you have some goals that are not SMART? If so, can they be refocused to become achievable, or should these goals be discarded?