Setting short-term goals might seem like a tedious process to some, but, believe it or not, they can actually help you get both instant and long-term success. Why? Because they break things down by compartmentalizing simpler tasks rather than having you focus on the big things that you’re trying to accomplish.
For instance, anyone who wants to become a multimillionaire clearly has high expectations for themselves. But you can’t get there overnight, so focus on learning something each day to help get to a $1,000, then $10,000, then $100,000, then $1,000,000 and, finally, more from there. It’s obviously not that simple, but you get the point — rarely do people achieve their end result before accomplishing some short-term goals first.
To help understand just how critical setting (and then accomplishing) short-term goals are, take a look below, which outlines how they can provide much more than some direction. Remember, people eventually wake up from dreams. But goals are something that people will hustle accomplishing when they’re passionate enough.
Short-Term Goals Should Be Easy To Accomplish
OK, so that’s somewhat of a lie, because nothing’s really easy to accomplish in life — hell, sometimes just getting out of bed takes more work than most of us want to admit. However, short-term goals at least aren’t as difficult to achieve as, say, becoming a multimillionaire; as mentioned above.
An example of something “easy” to accomplish can be simply avoiding going out to eat for lunch today, or making dinner at home each night this week so not to spend money and pack on the calories that eating out often brings. Stay disciplined and you’ll feel better about yourself, and then have a few extra bucks to go out this weekend and really live it up if you want to.
They Hold You Accountable
Oh, are you feeling tired AF today and don’t want to go workout today? Hey, it happens. But when you set short-term goals for yourself, most of the time, you’re at least able to push yourself, find some motivation and get some sweat going. That’s because, rather than tell yourself you have to set some personal record, you can just go for 30 minutes and feel better about yourself for sticking to your plan.
Since these types of goals often give instant feedback, you’re able to stay focused on them, rather than exhaust yourself with something that requires more work or dedication. Keep shit simple, stupid.
They Give You Confidence
Human beings love being rewarded for shit, so of course you want to feel good about yourself after doing something you set your mind to. It can be as simple as cleaning your place to feel better organized, which reminds you that, yeah, you’re not such a slob after all, to something more intense like Jared Allen’s plan of learning the basics of curling in order to try to become a Winter Olympian.
Every minute of every day presents an opportunity for you to prove to yourself (and others) that you can do anything you set your mind to, whether big or small. And by setting a short-term goal in order to help you get there will expand your horizons and could potentially lead to taking bigger risks to go for your long-term goals, too.
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Short-Term Goals Are Practical
Tom Brady’s the best quarterback the NFL has ever seen, there’s little debate of that. With six Super Bowl rings, the New England Patriots quarterback has won more titles than any other signal-caller in history. But Brady had humble beginnings in the league before accomplishing so much.
After being selected No. 199 overall in the 2000 NFL Draft, Brady probably didn’t tell himself he was going to win all those Super Bowls. Instead, he probably just wanted to make the Patriots’ roster, then compete for a starting gig, then win a division title and then see if he can lift the Lombardi Trophy one day.
Point is, while long-term goals are great, setting short-term goals are much more attainable, and provide a foundation for people as they continue to navigate through life.
They Give You Control Of What You Want
Screw what everyone else wants for you, because short-term goals can allow you to pursue the passions you’re really interested in. Want to be a photographer? Get a camera and figure out how to use it. Think you have the chops to become an actor? Read about what it takes to sign up for classes and get your feet wet. It’s all about baby steps, then you can learn, gain confidence and go from there.
Writing down the goals that you can achieve today, tomorrow and this month will set you up for success and lead to those long-term goals later this year and in the future. Again, get a foundation and you’re on your way; it just takes pushing yourself to achieve those small tasks first.
Short-Term Goals Can Serve As Stepping Stones For Bigger Goals
The most blatant benefit of setting short-term goals is that it gives you a chance to grow on them as you accomplish them. Like a baby, you learn to crawl, stand, walk and then run, which all starts from a simple plan — even if you don’t know it as an infant.
Remember, you’re not reaching the pinnacle tomorrow, but, who knows, you may in a year or so if you give yourself things to focus on now that will help you along the journey. Setting short-term goals will lead to winning each day, which can turn into reaching those long-term goals that will help you win months and years.