“People with goals succeed because they know where they are going.”Earl Nightingale
July 19, 1995, was an exceptional day. The sand was silky smooth. The water was crystal clear. You best friends and loving family members were there with you. Everyone was happy but the two of you were ecstatic. You finally tied the knot and jumped over the broom. You become someone’s partner for life. You said some beautiful vows and the both of you agreed by saying “I do”. Now it’s July 20th. What do you do now? If you want to be married 22 years from that day then you better love each other. You better stick to your vows. You better do your best and forgive each other if you fall short. Yet is being together 22 years from that day all that you want? Your answer should be no. You should want to live a life full of friendship and joy. You should want a life full of love and passion. You should want a life filled with support and encouragement. The only way you will have all of those beautiful aspects of your marriage is to define your intentions and set your goals. If you want it to happen you will have to make it happen.
Based on today’s divorce rates it’s a good guess that many couples aren’t making it happen. If you’ve been to marriage counseling you probably can take over and write the rest of this content. However, you don’t need a marriage counselor to tell you that setting your intentions is a key to having real success. If you want success in your career you have to set your intentions so you can properly navigate to the right job for you. If you fail to navigate you will end up wherever your job decides to drop you off. As important as your career is you probably don’t want to leave it in someone else’s hands. If you want success in your health you have to set your intentions or you will end up only as healthy as the environment you spend most of your time in allows. With all of the sitting, processed foods and libations you could end up very unhealthy pretty quick. If you want success intellectually you will need to set your intentions so you decide to read that book instead of binge watching the entire Housewives reality TV collection. Whatever the dimension of wellness, you must make it known what your intentions are to achieve the results that you want.
Goals → Plans → Actions → Evaluate → Repeat
So how do you successfully define your intentions? You sit down and develop a goal, that’s how. Let’s take the marriage as an example. Before you got married you heavily dated. You felt chills whenever your spouse came over to see you. You actually missed your spouse when you didn’t see each other for more than a few days. You daydreamed about touching your spouse’s skin. You were a great listener because you wanted to hear what your spouse was saying. Now that you are married you need to set goals to keep all of those wonderful traits of your relationship. You and your spouse need to get out a piece of paper and write down “Our goal is to keep our passion in our marriage just as strong as it is today.” Once you have that goal you need to develop a plan to achieve that goal. Now that the plan is developed you must now take action following those plans. Set the goal, make a plan, take action against the plan and that’s it. You will have passion for the rest of your marriage. Actually you may not have passion for the rest of your life if you don’t sit down periodically and measure your progress towards meeting your goal. Based on your progress you may need to adjust your plans to get better results. Sounds like a job? Yes, it does and it’s the best job you will ever have if you do it right.
This cycle can and should be applied to all aspects of your life where you want success. Define your goal, create a plan, take actions based on that plan, measure your progress and make any adjustments to the plan as necessary. Once you’ve reached a goal as planned and it’s sustainable your next step is to define a new goal. Life is all about growth so you should always be working towards some goal. You should always have an intention you are working on in your life. It gives you something to live for and what could be more important than that? There is nothing worse than feeling like you are living for nothing. If you are feeling like that in any aspect of your life it’s time to set some goals. If you come in to work every day just to get in your hours then you may fit in this category. Having that attitude is the easiest way to let 5 years go by with nothing to show for the time spent.
Values + Plan + Actions = Great Success
There is one more ingredient that needs to be added to the formula and that’s your values. With good values you can have good success. Being a hard worker will increase the chances of you getting good results. If you do everything with integrity you can be assured you won’t do anything you can’t stand behind which should also give good results. If you are a giving person you will always do well because you reap what you so. If you are a loyal friend or teammate you will always be important to the team and which should also help things go well. But in order to do great you have to combine your value with a goal that turns into a plan that you take action on. That is the winning formula. Values + plan + action = great success. If you are missing or lacking any one of those attributes you will not achieve great success. You might do ok or even pretty good but I’m sure you aren’t striving for that. You are striving for greatness and that isn’t just given away. You have to be precise and committed to achieve it.
Your goal today is to reflect on the areas of your life where you want great success. Do you have a goal in that area? Do you have a plan on achieving that goal for that area? If you answer no to either of those questions it doesn’t matter what values you have or actions you take. Without a goal and accompanying plan you are keeping yourself from achieving great success. If you do have a goal and are taking action then take some time to evaluate your progress. If things are progressing well keep up the good work. If things aren’t progressing well reevaluate the goal and/or the plan. After you make any necessary changes get back to taking action. You are destined for great success but it won’t happen without your focused effort. Consider this a reminder to help you along the way. As always I wish you the best and remind you to enjoy the journey.