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If you have read my articles for any length of time, you know that I am a zealot when it comes to goal setting. I constantly set my personal and professional goals. I write them down and watch them come to life and I hope you do the same. But one thing you should keep in mind is that your goals must match your personal value system. If any projected goal doesn’t mirror what you personally believe then your chances of success diminish greatly. Your core values, your personal desires and what you believe in are all intertwined. If you forget about one of them, the whole thing tumbles to the ground. Goal setting then becomes pointless.

Knowing what you truly believe is extremely important to create a listing of goals that actually mean something to you. Your values are standards that guide your conduct, your personal relations with those around you and give you the focus and direction needed to excel in your career. Look at it this way; it’s simply your moral fortitude - those feelings that help distinguish right and wrong and help you live your life in a meaningful way.

You must also determine who you are and understand your strengths and weaknesses. Evaluate your abilities and consider your accomplishments and failures. Knowing who you are and what you are capable of prevents you from creating goals that underestimate or overestimate your expertise and directs you toward realistic, attainable goals. Hey, shoot for the moon but if you create realistic goals you are more likely to succeed. Inaccurate direction can cause you to lose many valuable assets including time, motivation and self-esteem. Believe me; you don’t want to go there! Goal setting is a positive exercise so try to maintain your constructive attitude and examine your situation logically.

Be prepared to update your goals to mirror what is important in your life right now. Things change and so should your goals. Update your aspirations and objectives now and again to help you achieve the things you need to do right now. If your situation changes but your goals don’t, you could lose your drive to achieve the desired results. Increase your chances of success by defining what is important to you. Develop your goals based on personal values, desires, and innermost beliefs, and create your achievement expectations to match your circumstances. If you skip any of these steps, you could weaken your motivation, fail to work up to your abilities, and reduce your opportunities for success.

Developing a road map for life will help you no matter what you do, personally or professionally. When your goals are reasonable and emulate your values and desires, you will become extremely motivated. I guarantee it. When you become motivated and work hard to attain your value-oriented goals, you will more than likely succeed. When you succeed, your motivation will continue to expand, and drive you to set new realistic and attainable goals, which will allow you to continue to achieve. Know who you are, know your current circumstances and desires, set your realistic goals, and start to succeed. Do it today!

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