You won’t be the person you aspire to be if you don’t put forth much effort to get there. Without direction and goals, you’re just meandering down the river of life, drifting along with the current, just like everyone else. You will never stand out. You will never earn the respect you deserve. You will always be in the middle of the pack. You are more than that, but you have to pursue it and live it, not just expect it.
Sometimes goals can be difficult to set. Here are some common reasons.
- You don’t have a destination you’re pursuing. Goals take you somewhere; but if you don’t know where you’re going, how do you know what goals to set?
- You’re too impatient. Goals should be individual bites of the apple, not the whole apple in one bite. Your goals should stretch you—not break you.
- You limit your goals. I recommend you concentrate your goals in three categories: technical, personal and interpersonal. Technical goals should be fairly easy. Personal goals include time management, doing what you say you will do, and learning when to speak up or shut up. Interpersonal goals might be communicating effectively, understanding others and handling conflict.
The key is to set only a few goals; maybe one in each category. You have a whole career to develop, so concentrate on a few and get good. Then move on to the next ones. Get some help from your mentor if you’re struggling with ideas or priorities.
If you didn’t already set any goals for the year, it’s never too late. This week, give yourself a good talking to and get serious about your career. Remember, you own it; not anyone else. Be good to yourself. Be responsible for yourself. Be your best self.
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