“Without dreams and goals there is no living, only merely existing, and that is not why we are here.” – Mark Twain
At this point in our professional lives, we all understand the importance of setting goals. Most of us have a great grasp setting SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Tangible) goals and likely use them on a regular basis. What we don’t always know or understand is why goals are important, and why they work! As Mr. Twain said, we are not here merely to exist. We are here to set big goals and reach towards our most outlandish dreams.
Goals Make Us Work
We often find ourselves spinning our wheels, metaphorically of course, while we try to move to our next destination. We know we want to get better, but without setting a specific goal, we don’t feel the motivation to work towards getting better. Let’s say you own a business and you have a fantastic new product. Setting a goal of “sell my product” doesn’t really incite any sort of motivation, but setting a specific goal of “I want to sell 10,000 of my product” gives you something to aim for.
Goals Give Us Focus
By setting goals, we give ourselves the beginnings of a road map. With a goal to attain, we start to put all of our work through that lens. Anything that moves us closer to the X on the map gets done, while everything outside that scope is set aside.
Goals Give Us Inspiration
Similar to seeing yourself make headway at the gym, watching yourself get closer to your goals is addicting, and as we get closer, our moment builds and likewise, our motivation builds. Once a goal is in place, if you’re doing the work, you’ll get closer to meeting it.
Goals Give Us Skills
As the great Steven Tyler of Aerosmith said in their 1992 smash hit Amazin’, “Life’s a Journey, Not a Destination.” We gain when we reach our goals, but what we learn along the way is what is of value. The work that you’ve put in on that map to your goal builds good habits, great characteristics and helps you to become the person you want to be.