How To Set Goals That Work Part 1

by Julie Baird on January 6, 2010

Goals are very important for time management for students as well as for all aspects of life. When done well, goals can make the difference between achieving what you want from life and floundering along. Here are some tips on how to set goals that will work for you.

  1. First think what you want to see happening in the future; paint a picture in your mind. Capture it on paper, using words or pictures. Keep that somewhere you can see it often. For example you might want to have good grades, be more relaxed, have time for friends, and feel as if you are on top of things and in control.
  2. Next, think about what kind of behaviors and actions that future picture requires. You need to be focused, study hard, be prepared for class, hand in assignments on time, plan your time well etc
  3. Then think about what support you are going to need to maintain the right behaviors and activities. What will make you keep going when sheer willpower won’t do. Think what systems you can put in place to make things happen. Or example, plan in a set time each week to plan out your activities; make an appointment with yourself to prepare for each assignment; have a board with all your assignments listed in clear view etc
  4. Decide how you will measure your progress. There is nothing worse than plodding on without knowing if what you are doing is making a difference. Pick some key things to track. Number of assignments handed in on time; amount of time spent with friends, number of times in the week you felt overwhelmed etc. Make sure they are measures that you can influence and that you don’t need to wait weeks to see the result. In other words, tracking your end of term grade is the ultimate measure but you need to measure things you can influence that will lead to that.

Now that you have done all the preparation work, goal setting is straight forward. But there are still some pitfalls. Check out the second part of this blog to complete the picture.

If you feel your teenager would like some help with goal setting or any other area of time management and organization then give me a call and we can work out how best to help them achieve their potential

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