This step is often missed in the process of goal setting. You get so focused on the outcome that you forget to plan all of the steps that are needed along the way. By writing out the individual steps, and then crossing each one off as you complete it, you'll realize that you are making progress towards your ultimate goal. This is especially important if your goal is big and demanding, or long-term. Read our article on Action PlansĀ  for more on how to do this.
The GOALS team was awarded a JWST ERS program to obtain MIRI, NIRCAM and NIRSPEC images and spectra of a sample of local LIRGs selected from the GOALS sample. The title of this program is "A JWST Study of the Starburst-AGN Connection in Merging LIRGs." A link to the abstracts of the awarded ERS programs can be found here. More information about the GOALS ERS program will be posted here soon!

The physical act of writing down a goal makes it real and tangible. You have no excuse for forgetting about it. As you write, use the word "will" instead of "would like to" or "might." For example, "I will reduce my operating expenses by 10 percent this year," not "I would like to reduce my operating expenses by 10 percent this year." The first goal statement has power and you can "see" yourself reducing expenses, the second lacks passion and gives you an excuse if you get sidetracked.
Assess why you're slipping: are you not sticking to your plan, or is your timeline unrealistic? If it's the latter, adjust your plan to something more reasonable. If it's the former, work on dedicating yourself to sticking to your target. Sometimes our plans are thwarted by outside influences, about which there's not much you can do; simply reorient yourself and continue onward. Keep in mind that failure is a part of progress.
Amazing post, and very timely! I agree 100% with "create your "big picture" of what you want to do with your life (or over, say, the next 10 years)" - so many people (me included) just don't do this and then struggle with staying on track. I found that by using SMART goals and especially by identifying my emotional attachment (the big reason WHY) behind my goals, I could start to actually achieve them. Now I am hooked!
Set goals that relate to the high priorities in your life. Without this type of focus, you can end up with far too many goals, leaving you too little time to devote to each one. Goal achievement requires commitment, so to maximize the likelihood of success, you need to feel a sense of urgency and have an "I must do this" attitude. When you don't have this, you risk putting off what you need to do to make the goal a reality. This in turn leaves you feeling disappointed and frustrated with yourself, both of which are de-motivating. And you can end up in a very destructive "I can't do anything or be successful at anything" frame of mind.
Achieving complex and difficult goals requires focus, long-term diligence and effort (see Goal pursuit). Success in any field requires forgoing excuses and justifications for poor performance or lack of adequate planning; in short, success requires emotional maturity. The measure of belief that people have in their ability to achieve a personal goal also affects that achievement.
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