Why is goal setting important in life? What difference does it make?
That depends entirely on the type of goals set.
We all set goals constantly; some we’re aware of, most we do automatically, but all determine the degree of success we feel we have achieved in life.
Plenty of people get through life without consciously setting goals. But they are missing out on so many opportunities.
Here are five powerful reasons why goal setting matters:
Goal setting motivates you to achieve what you want. Once you know how to set goals, your ability to attach meaning to your deepest desires results in a level of motivation that is greatly overstated but little understood: passion.
Setting goals gives your life more meaning, purpose and passion; surely that makes it worth doing?
A person without consciously chosen goals tends to drift from one thing to another. The result? Dissatisfaction caused by a feeling that time has been wasted on things that are either irrelevant, irresponsible or unimportant, as the time management matrix shows.
Well chosen goals mean you spend your time doing things that align with your values -- everything you do has a point and a purpose.
Do you have goals like this yet? Setting goals for yourself will have a positive impact on the quality of your time choices. What you decide to do will possibly scare you, probably challenge you, but definitely mean more to you.
Well chosen goals take you out of your comfort zone. Anything that does this, whether you wanted to do it or not, presents the best opportunity for growth. Your growth.
The process may be difficult, even painful, but you discover valuable truths about yourself and the world around you. Your heightened awareness enables you to do something about it.
Once you know, you can grow.
Yes, the process can be painful, but the journey is often as good as the destination.
Why is goal setting important in this respect? The answer is simple and powerful -- it makes today better for you. You can remember the past and look forward to, or fear, the future, but you only ever experience ‘today’; specifically, this very moment.
Goal setting affects now because it gives you something to look forward to, and that feeling is available this very moment.
At any time, you’re free to choose what you think about. Bored, worried or scared? Replace negative thoughts and feelings with something better -- think about what you want.
You choose the direction your life takes -- you assume full responsibility for your actions and their consequences.
You’re nobody’s puppet, or a victim of circumstance. You’ve always got a choice in what you think, say or do. This is a mindset that many people don’t consider. They feel trapped, as if they ‘have to’.
It doesn’t matter whether your goal is to get something good or leave something bad; accept that you chose everything in your life now, and exercise your freedom to choose from now on.
Do you want to re-commit or move on?
* * *
Life makes a habit of habits. It’s too easy to do the same things day in, day out without ever really changing. Goals are still set; it’s just that they are set to dull the pain of monotony.
Why is goal setting important? Because it injects creativity, promotes growth and ultimately, helps you fulfil your potential.
All of the above can simply be summed up by this quote from Brian Tracy:
to work forever for those who do.’
That’s why it matters.