Goal Setting- Planning

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“A goal without a plan is just a wish” .
-Unknown

The importance of planning cannot be over-emphasised. Books have been written, seminars have been held, and all continues to be done in the hopes of making people see and value the importance of planning.
I for one know how important it is to plan. I will admit, however that I have not fully utilized its benefits.
Planning can indeed be easier spoken of than done. That’s why I have decided to share this post, because I have found ways of getting around it and I thought it would be nice to share. That said, let’s get into it! 🙂

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The Process
Sometimes we are lazy, not in the mood or we are so tied up with a whole lot of nothing!However, if something is important to you, you will surely find the time for it. So if you are insanely passionate about achieving your goals, you WILL make time for planning them.

1) Put your mind into it.
Start by clearing your mental space. Delete all negative thoughts and distractions. For me, a short prayer does wonders in setting the stage.
Disposition is everything. If you are tuned to a negative frequency, you will perceive only negativity. But if you are positive and optimistic, nothing can bring you down.

2)Write down your aspirations.
Grab your pen and paper and write down what you want to achieve over a lifetime, what you are passionate about and where you want to be.
By so doing, you are making long term goals. Now break it down; Write down what you want to achieve over a month. Then get more specific by listing your weekly goals and finally, daily agendas. This gives you a clear, concise idea of what you want and how you will make it a reality.

3) Write down an action plan.
You now know what you want. Its time to decide how you will get what you want. When it comes to action, its always political. You start befriending tomorrows and suddenly you need to catch a nap. Do not entertain such evils! Decide affirmatively the action you will take, but be realistic enough to actually follow it through. We usually fail to take action because we scare ourselves away with dramatic and unrealistic goals. Start small and graduate steadily.
Write down the major actions, for example “lose weight”. Break the actions down by writing down the steps you will take to do this, such as sign up for an aerobic class, make a monthly budget of healthy food, make a weekly meal schedule, design an exercise routine and so on. Then break it down to daily activities like exercises for the day, drink 8 glasses of water today, go to the gym this evening, and so it goes.

As part of planning, it is important to keep a daily record of your progress. I like to list my daily objectives first thing in the morning. This not only gets me in the right mindframe, but it also helps me remember what I need to do for that day, least I forget.
At the end of the day, write down your achievements, lessons and future action you will take. It is also helpful to describe your mood and emotions as well as your levels of motivation.

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Tools To Stay Motivated
Keeping a steady record can be cumbersome. It heps to have some aiding tools.You do not need fancy gadgets or a warehouse full of equipment. It is as simple as keeping a notebook, a diary or an agenda. In fact, the simpler the better. If you prefer the modern wizztech functionalities, there are numerous applications at your disposal to cater to your needs. One application I used is called To-do Calendar Planner. It works like a to-do list, agenda, planner and reminder. Personally I didn’t find much use for it because I prefer the hardcopy versions (notebook and pen 🙂 ). Another app that works in a similar way is called ‘Any Do’ and this was recommended to me by a friend. Other than these, you can use the office tools that come pre installed on mobile devices or simply search for similar apps.

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Besides notebooks and mobile applications, another motivating tool is a vision board. This literally gives you a picture of where you want to be. If you need ideas on how to get one, check my previous post on how I made mine.

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Motivation is always great when it comes from those close to you. I am very blessed to be surrounded by wonderful people who support me in every way. My advice is to surround yourself with people who keep you motivated, encouraged and hyped.
I also find music and videos very helpful in keeping me motivated. I love to listen to jazz and soul music and it works wonders for me in staying motivated.
Above all, prayer is most important in anything you are going to venture into. A simple word of thanks, and heaps of faith in the Almighty are more important than any planning strategy you will apply. ♥

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