Why It Is Important To Write Down Your Goals

Always-write-out-your

This past Saturday night we decided to go out for dinner. As we were driving I was explaining to Melissa my four biggest business goals for the next two months. The conversation became uncomfortable for me when Melissa asked me if I had written my goals down. It was uncomfortable for me because I had to confess that I had not.

I wrote them down on Sunday when I had some time and was working. Writing down goals is important if for no other reason than to keep you from forgetting them. I had to think rather hard to remember each of the four goals and also the specific details of each goal.

But there are other reasons for writing out your goals. When you transfer a goal from inside the mind and physically bring it into being on paper it now exists in the physical world.  Now that it is real and on paper you can look at it daily or twice a day to help to keep you on track.

When you write down you goal your attention towards that goal narrows and directs your energies towards more goal-relevant activities. Writing down your goal can lead to more effort and you may work more intensely in order to reach the goal. Writing down your goals also fuels persistence as you also become more prone to work through setbacks and work harder when the goal is clear and written out.

When you write out your goals it gives you purpose. An activity that I have done for the past 20 years or so is to write down all of my big goals for the next year sometime in December. They are not resolutions but things I want to get done that year and what I want to achieve, do, see, etc. It is usually a very big list. I usually never get it all done and my success rate I would say is around 75%, but, that 75% that I do accomplish typically makes for a very great year. I love to go back at the end of the year and mark off everything that I have done. It inspires me to keep doing it year after year.

Don’t forget to write out your reasons for setting the goals. What are the benefits if you achieve it? What are the consequences if you don’t? Doing this gets leverage on yourself to follow through. The reasons for the goal are typically more powerful than the goal itself. As Tony Robbins says, “focus on the why and the how will take care of itself.”

Writing out your goals keeps you focused on what you want, helps you achieve more, narrows your attention, leads to more effort, and can foster improved pride and self confidence.

Write down your goals and make them real. It also goes a long ways to prevent you from a) forgetting the goal, and b) straining to remember what it was in the first place when you finally do get around to writing them down.

Andy Wooten M.A. Counseling – Certified Life Coach – Aspen, Colorado

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