Goal Setting (Junior and Senior High School Students)
Only 3% of the population sets goals. Studies show those individuals who set goals will achieve overall better results than those individuals who do not set goals. Most success stories begin with a goal. They start with a statement of purpose and continue through a plan of action. Although goals are not easy to maintain or achieve, nothing in life is so rewarding.
Why do you need to set goals? A goal provides the following benefits:
- Provides a sense of purpose
- Propels you into action
- Reveals your full potential
- Offers hope
- Helps you focus
Here are some goal setting tips:
- Only you can set and achieve the goals you set for yourself.
- Set your goals on your individual performance and not on outcomes.
- Write your goals down and keep them in a journal and review daily.
- Make a commitment to invest your time and effort into your goals.
- Make a commitment to achieve your goals and have someone to hold you accountable.
- Take your time writing down your goals and ask yourself questions such as how much time will this take? Do I have the motivation, discipline and attitude to be successful?
- Set realistic goals, unrealistic goals will leave you frustrated and disappointed.
- Update your goals as circumstances change.
- Prioritize your goals – short-term and long-term.
- Allocate your time accordingly to the goals you set.
- Measure your goals.
- Dream BIG and do not be afraid to fail
Let’s Reflect on Your Past Successes
It is always a good thing to capture your successes. When a goal was accomplished, you feel good about yourself. You can learn a lot when you accomplish a goal especially what it takes in your attitude, discipline and focus to be successful. As you review the questions, below capture the key learning’s you discovered while achieving your goals. A key learning is something that worked to achieve the goal. However, it could also be something that you did that you would not do again while focusing on that particular goal.
List and explain two goals you have set and accomplished in your life.
- What have you learned about yourself through the process of achieving these goals?
- Is there any key learning that you can use while you set your new goals?
Putting Effort and Energy Into Your Goals
Many people set goals based on where their desires are in life. The desire to achieve your goal might include one of the following:
- Expertise – I want to become an expert in ________.
- Duty – I feel I am obligated to a higher cause.
- Prestige – I want to attain fame.
- Security – I want a job to support me and my future family.
- Service – I want to serve the public.
- Leadership – I want to be respected and lead others.
- Parenthood – I want to develop fine children.
- Love – I want to share love and companionship.
- Pleasure – I want to enjoy the good life.
- Power – I want to be in control.
- Wealth – I want to become personally wealthy.
- Independence – I want to be free to think and express myself.
- Personal Fulfillment – I want to have a purpose and fulfill it in life.
Please review the list above and list your top three choices of your desires in life.
Let’s begin by setting the following goals in four main areas.
- Career Goals
- Educational Goals
- Fun or Leisure Goals
- Personal Goals
It is a fact, many people today are not happy with their current career. Perhaps they never asked themselves the simple question, “If I could be anything, what would I be?“ What is your dream? If you have never stated or written your career desires, now is a good time to start.
Use the space provided to state your top two career goals and explain your ideal role and function in each. Remember, be realistic.
- Your Primary Career Goal – Your dream career job or position. In other words, your ideal way to make a living.
- Your Secondary Career Goal – If your dream job becomes difficult to attain, what alternative career would you consider?
My Primary Career Goal – My dream career/job/position is:
My Secondary Career Goal: My alternative career/job/position is:
Today, a quality education and targeted training is necessary for all employment endeavors. Take a look at your career goals and try to determine the level of education, skills, and training you need to succeed in your perspective career. (Please refer back to the Profession session) Please list your educational goals explain why these goals are important to your career. When explaining these goals please answer the following questions:
- What type of degree will you need to succeed in your chosen career? ( i.e. BA, MA, MBA, Ph.D, or specialized degree etc.)
- What skills will you need to acquire? (i.e. Language, organizational, communication, sales, intercultural, technical, artistic, writing, etc.)
- What hands on training will you require? ( i.e. Computer, research methods, medical, etc.)
- What people and resources (specific or general) can help you to achieve these goals? (i.e. parents, teachers, mentors, internships, student organizations, volunteer work, professional contacts, specialized publications, trade or academic journals, libraries, computer software, etc.)
Please list your goals below:
Educational Goals for Primary Career Goal
Educational Goals for Secondary Career Goals
Leisure and Fun Goals
Because life is a balance between work and leisure, you also need a plan to develop the other half of your life. You will spend a fair amount of your life establishing yourself professionally, but how you spend your free time will speak volumes about the real you. In the space provided below, list your leisure or fun goals. When explaining these goals, please answer the following questions:
- What type of lifestyle would you like to have?
- Outside of work, how will you spend your leisure time? What hobbies interest you? What individual or team sports will you play? Is learning how to master a musical instrument in your future? Do you aspire to learn a new language or travel to any particular part of the world? Do you have any desire to become a great gourmet cook? Would you like to help local charitable organizations?
Please list your fun or leave your goals below.
Personal goals are not about “doing”, as much as they are about “being” and “becoming”. In this exercise you will set your personal goals by writing statements of purpose which describe the person you want to become. Please describe your personal desires, wishes, hopes and aspirations you want to obtain. Are there any personal qualities, habits or behaviors you wish you had? It’s not too late to form habits and develop these areas of yourself. Please use the space below to list and develop your statements of purpose. (Please refer to the Purpose session for your statements of purpose) Please refer to the following examples.
– my goal is a treat every person as if he/she was the most important person in the world.
– my goal is to be kind to every person I meet.
– my goal is to be empathetic even try to put myself in the shoes of other people when conflict arises.
– my goal is to never quit learning, even after college. I will always strive to learn something new each day.
– my goal is to keep in touch with all the people I meet. Whether I call, right, text, email, or visit them, I want them to know I care.
– my goal is except complements given meet with a simple, “thank you.“
Since only 3% of the population set goals, you know that there might be obstacles in your way. That is why you need to persevere and begin to understand that you can reach your goals. The following are five potential factors that may hold you back that we want to make you aware of so that you persevere until the end of achieving your goals.
– fear of failure-if you think you can, you can. If you think you can’t, you’re right. Maintain a positive attitude throughout your goal achieving process.
– fear of success-some people actually fear the thought of being successful. The pressure of those in the winner circle is high. If you perform well in one endeavor, will you be expected to top that success the next time around? Just remember, success breeds confidence. Fear of success is a tragedy. Many people who lack your talents and ability would gladly trade places with you.
– wanting to quit because things don’t go your way. In the beginning, your goals look relatively easy to achieve. However, as time goes on you might see additional obstacles in your way. If you have done everything in your power to maintain your goal, but you still fall short, look at the progress you’ve already made and try again.
– your focus is on competing with others-are you riding in your friend’s backseat, or are you driving your own car, take a look at your primary motive for your goal. Are you motivated positively or negatively? Do you have something to prove in order to gain social recognition? If envy or greed is driving your actions, you were surely fail. Is it better to be internally motivated than externally motivated.
– procrastination-if you want to make an easy job seem harder, just keep putting it off. Procrastination says, “do it tomorrow.” “It will go away by itself.” “I have no control over my situation.” One Company says it best “just do it”.
Prioritizing and Making a Timeline
Now that you have looked at your goals, it is time to understand how to set short-term, mid-term and long-term goals. Please review your career goals, educational goals, leisure goals, and personal goals. Then begin to set your short- terms, mid-term and long-term goals.
Short term goals/goals be accomplished within the next year. Where do you want to be in one year? (Focused on a career path, part-time job, learning a trade, involved in multiple clubs at school, playing a specific sport).
Mid-term goals/goals to be accomplished within the following five years. Where do you want to be in five years? (Graduate high school or college, get a job, advance in a position, internship or entrepreneur).
Long-term goals/goals to be accomplished someday. Where do you want to be in 10 years? (married, children, teaching, working at…, earning an advanced degree, owner of my own company)
In summary, on average, a person makes about 1400 decision (choice) per day. In fact, because of the “information explosion” and our seemingly endless access to data, (via Internet, television, computers, and smart phones) we process more “bits” of information in a single day, than people just a century ago were exposed to in their entire lifetime.
A key to moving forward in life and realizing the goals you have set, lies in your ability to overcome or change habits. As you move ahead to achieve your goals, we recommend the following:
- Determine to change your destiny by changing habits that prevent you from achieving success.
- To be successful, develop relationships with others that will hold you accountable to achieve your goals.
- From the beginning, please understand that change is a process and will take a day by day, step-by-step approach to achieve your desired changes.
- Stay focused on your dreams and goals. Eliminate and reduce the distractions in your life and you will see greater results.
Your Focus Determines Your Future!