Some goal setting tips

WORK HARDDREAM BIGHere’s a quick look at a goal setting workshop with Tony Robbins and his Personal Power audios which I’ve had for years and have listened to a couple of times. I’ve just listened to his goal setting strategy and followed his instructions step by step.

He opens the goal setting workshop (part of a 7 and 31 day course) by saying that familiarity is a dangerous place to reside with your goal setting experience.

He refers to John Wooden and how even though he coaches the most famous basketball players in the world, he starts by teaching them how to put on their socks and tie up their shoelaces! Who would have thought you could have something else to learn in those departments.

I’ve been goal setting for over 25 years and learn more every time I do a course on this and have a completely different style of setting goals after working with my coach for the last year or so.

If Tony Robbins still works on his goals and Richard Bandler has completely reinvented how he teaches goal setting in the last few years, then you know there is still a lot of work that needs to be done.

The science behind goal setting

Recent research at Dominican University, California discovered that people who wrote down their goals benefited from a 76% success rate compared to only 43% for those who didn’t . “My study provides empirical evidence for the effectiveness of three coaching tools: accountability, commitment, and writing down one’s goals,” Dr Matthews said.

When you add a purpose and a why and some timescales they start to really take a life of their own and suddenly they seem so much more attainable that they are almost palpable.

Here’s a good question to ask:

What would reaching your goals make you as a person?

I’ve created a simple acronym to help you remember how to set a goal. It’s just for fun and I’m still working on it. If you have any suggestions on other words, let me know in the comments-


T = Time – a time constraint of when you will achieve it

R = Reason – a good strong one to motivate you to achieve it

I = Important – it’s helpful if you are passionate about achieving it

C = Consistent – that you consistently and persistently reach to achieve it

E = Evaluated – you want to be able to measure your progress (see KPI App here)

Pitfalls to look out for on your way to success

Be aware of success. It can be a trap that makes you believe you have arrived and don’t need to do anything else. Complacency.

Enough said.


It’s good to look into the future and see yourself reaching all your goals. In fact, make time every day to visualise yourself reaching your goals and then backtracking from your future success towards the present again and on the way look out for any challenges you might (you will) face in the future.

There are going to be obstacles, that’s just a fact of life. However, you can visualise planning for those obstacles. And not just in what you might do, such as if x happens then I will implement y. That’s good, but you can also include your intrinsic interventions. For instance, if x happens I will respond with an attitude/mindset/state/emotion of y.

For more on that, check out my article on the WOOP method.

Going one step further, imagine for a moment that you don’t take the time to write your goals. That you don’t reach your goals. That you fall way short. Imagine how your life will turn out in the next 1 year, 5 years, 10 years and more if you just keep drifting through life and never attain what you know is possible. How would that feel? Who else might that affect in your life?

Brian Tracy’s 21 tips for goal setting

“The most important quality you can develop for lifelong success is the habit of taking action on your plans, goals, ideas, and insights. The more often you try, the sooner you will triumph. There is a direct relationship between the number of things you attempt and your accomplishments in life. Here are the twenty-one steps for setting and achieving goals and for living a wonderful life.” ~ Brian Tracy

1. Unlock Your Potential. Your potential is bigger than you think. As Ellen Langer would say, it’s unknowable. Brian would say it’s unlimited. Let’s unlock it! (One of his stretch questions: What would you do if you knew you could not fail?)

2. Take Charge of Your Life. We’re never going to achieve great things if we’re walking around complaining and making excuses. Be Proactive, Extreme Ownership style.

3. Create Your Own Future. If you had no limits, what would you do, be, or have in the months and years and decades ahead. Dare to dream. Then make it happen.

4. Clarify Your Values. Who are you? What’s important? Successful people have taken the time to know themselves and strive to live in integrity with their deepest values.

5. Determine Your True Goals. Key here? More clarity. More on the “The Great Question” in a moment. (Hint: What do you *really* want?)

6. Decide Upon Your Major Definite Purpose. What’s the #1 one goal that, if you achieved it, would have the most positive impact on all your other goals? That’s your major definite purpose.

7. Analyze Your Beliefs. What do you believe about yourself and the world? Your selfconcept and guiding beliefs have a bigger impact than you might be aware of.

8. Start at the Beginning. We have a big dream. Fantastic. Now it’s time to be super honest about where we’re at. Start at the beginning by embracing reality.

9. Measure Your Progress. Set up clear goals and measure yourself against them to see how you’re doing. And, as always, celebrate those wins!!

10. Remove the Roadblocks. Problems and obstacles are inevitable. Let’s get really good at solving them. Step 1: Have a relentless solution focus. Eat the obstacles like energy bars.

11. Become an Expert in Your Field. Brian tells us we have the ability to be among the very best in our field—the top 10%. Make that a goal, “work on it every day, and never stop working at it until you get there.”

12. Associate with the Right People. The math goes something like this: We’re the average of the five people with whom we spend the most time. Let’s spend time with people who inspire us!

13. Make a Plan of Action. “An ordinary person with a well-thought-out-plan will run circles around a genius without one.” Create that plan. Dynamically respond to what arises.

14. Manage Your Time Well. What’s important? Know it. Do it. Repeat. (Eliminate distractions.)

15. Review Your Goals Daily. Brian is a big believer in writing down and reviewing your goals until you have absolute belief you’ll hit them.

16. Visualize Your Goals Continually. “See” your ideal future in your mind’s eye. Feel it. All the time.

17. Activate Your Superconscious Mind. Your conscious mind is like a postage stamp relative to that NASA supercomputer of your subconscious mind. Program it well.

18. Remain Flexible at All Times. The hallmark of flourishing people is their psychological flexibility—their ability to respond freshly to life as new information comes in. You flexible?

19. Unlock Your Inborn Creativity. Brian tells us we are each a potential genius. And gives us ways to tap into that. We’ll explore one of my favorites in a moment.

20. Do Something Every Day. We want to invite Mr. Mo to the party and then take good care of him! Best way? Work on your goal every day.

21. Persist Until You Succeed. We’re going to talk about this one more in a moment as well. Ultimately, “Persistence is self-discipline in action and the true measure of your belief in yourself. Resolve in advance that you will never, never give up!”