There are too many people out there who don’t set clear goals for themselves. Without goals, the direction in which you take your life will be blurry– goals help you determine where you should focus your efforts, and how they can work together to help you achieve your dreams.
But not everyone who sets goals does it effectively. Here are the three most common mistakes we make when setting goals– and it’s often just enough to undermine the progress we’re trying to make:
1. Making goals that are too specific — In general, goals need to be specific. If they’re too vague, we don’t know what steps to take to reach them. Also, it becomes difficult to determine whether we even reached them at all!
But goals that are too specific can be equally devastating. If we have tunnel vision about our goals, we can sometimes lose sight of why we set that goal. We often have to course-correct and adapt our goals as we go, and if they’re too specific, that can be hard to do.
2. Setting too many goals –– The more goals we set at one time, the harder it gets to prioritize them. People are apt to choose the ones that will be easiest to achieve, and that’s not always the best option.
3. Creating an inappropriate timeframe — A lot of people have trouble knowing whether a goal should be short-term or long-term. If we don’t meet a deadline we set for ourself, we think we failed. But it’s often the case that we just made an unrealistic timeframe.