The Importance of Short-Term Goals for Motivation and Success

Aspyn Coaching
The Importance of Short-Term Goals for Motivation and Success

We set goals for ourselves and strive to meet them. But how hard we work is often related to how achievable and immediate our goals seem. A goal to save a million dollars might start a few pennies at a time, but a goal to save $50 might be quickly achieved with $5 dropped every few days. This is exactly why short-term goals are an important part of every personal and professional development plan.

Whether you're trying to stay organized and achieve your self-set goals or you're trying to reach one really distant-seeming goal, short-term goals are essential. Short-term goals are reachable and can take you one step at a time closer to a bigger goal. But more importantly, short-term goals are motivating. They keep us moving forward - at a speedy pace! - with each step where we might lose momentum with our eyes only on the far-distant prize.

Short Term Goals are Motivating

When you complete a short-term goal, you feel great. You get that winner feeling from setting up a task and completing it on your own power. This can feel great, especially if you've been feeling like your long-term goals just never get any closer. Short-term goals can show you how each step matters, and motivate you to take and complete the next step because winning feels good.

Short Term Goals Break the Mold

When you first get started setting short-term goals, there is one thing everyone notices; it breaks your routine. You break out of the rut you've been stuck in, you try new things, and you get creative. Short-term goals can help you simulate the urgency humans need to be creative and energetic. For example, when your car pops a tire on the freeway, your brain starts firing. What was once an auto-pilot drive to the store and back becomes an adventure; a challenge you have to face swiftly and with your full faculties online.

A short-term goal can turn a good situation - like your desire to learn a new skill - into an active project. You decide the day to meet your goal, you set a timer, and you dive in with your whole attention and motivation. Instead of ho-humming around on Saturday doing laundry and listening to podcasts, you can set aside 30 minutes for four or five short-term goals and start to really achieve.

Break the mold, break out of your rut, and test how short-term goal achievement gets you going in new directions.

Setting Short Term Goals to Reach Long-Term Goals

One of the best things about short-term goals is that they can be for short projects - like sorting a drawer - or they can each be a step toward a larger goal - like learning that skill or cleaning the entire garage one box at a time.

To achieve big goals with short-term goals, define your goal and then determine smaller steps you can take. If you want a clean garage, you tackle one box at a time. If you want a stronger body, each work-out session is a step in the right direction. If you want a promotion, you can spend an hour every Saturday studying new skills and getting online certifications.

Splash Inspirational Short-Term Goals Into the Mix

Don't forget mental health and personal inspiration. More emotional goals are also worth building into your short-term project. Invite yourself to appreciate nature for five minutes every day, perhaps with your morning or evening cup of tea. Some people make dream analysis or lucid dream training into their inspiration al short-term goal; writing down every dream as they wake up.

Others write down what they are grateful for, or things that inspired them during the day. A few inspirational short term goals can help you see yourself, your mental health, and the world around you in a new light.

Building Each Day with Rewarding Short-Term Goals

How do you keep track of all your short-term goals, or build a goal-sequence that leads to your long-term goals? Most people use a planner. An inspirational planner is a great way to guide yourself through achievements and introspection in each day.

The right planner can help you not only make your long-term goals into rewarding short-term goals, but also help you build a well-balanced life between your emotional, physical, and professional focus each day.

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