Setting Goals & Creating Action Plans
Setting goals and creating action plans is a great pen and paper exercise that can result in a clear road map to achieving your dreams. As a personal productivity skill, prosperity skill and healthy habit, it’s strongly recommended. Grab your pen (I recommend the G2 Extra Fine Point) and your Moleskine Notebook or blank paper and get started.
Begin by setting very specific goals. It’s okay that they’re lofty but don’t make them impossible e.g. avoid “world domination” and $”100 Billion in 2 days” type of goals. If they’re too crazy, you won’t even attempt to pursue them and you’ll hate yourself for being such a sarcastic defeatist. Pick a goal, something that is desired but seemingly out of your reach in your current moment.
Once you’ve chosen a goal try refining the goal several times by making it more specific. Break those goals down into smaller goals and objectives and pursue them with specific action plans. Here’s a walk-through:
1. Choose a goal. Write it down. “I want more moneyz” Choose an ambitious affirmative goal and state it as if you actually have it
- I have plenty of extra spending money in my bank account.
2. Make it specific. Write it down. If you were happy with your original goal, challenge yourself to make it more specific. ” I want more money now”
- I have $10,000 per month left in my bank account after all my bills are paid.
3. Give it a third wash and make it even more specific or refined. “I want $10,000 in this bag or the pretty red head gets it.” (No gingers were harmed during the writing of this post)
- I have $10,000 per month that I can enjoy spending frivolously.
4. Break the goal up into smaller goals/objectives. If the big goal is $10,000 in your pocket by 5pm tomorrow, These smaller goals can be find bank, buy gun, etc.
- Make $ 2300 extra per week.
How? You may have a way to earn more at your job, you might not. It’s time to get creative, out of the box, and dream it up. Broken down further and applied to your job/work or how you may do it may look like this for example:
- Get 2 new clients or 20 new customers per week
- Sell 1 car/house each week
Once you have these smaller, tighter goals in place, you’re ready to develop an action plan to determine how to go about making it all happen.
Ready for Action
Goals in mind, how ought you pursue them this week and the weeks to follow? Answer these questions on paper to develop weekly action plans
- If I had all the resources and time in the world, what would be the ideal steps? List 3 steps here.
- What would be a realistic /middle of the road steps be? List 3 Steps here. This might be challenging but if one of the steps might be to research a subject/look it up.
- What specifically would be the first step to accomplish the middle of the road approach? How can you start right now?
- Is this achievable this week with everything I have going on? Yes/No
- What day/time this week will I have this step (or these steps) completed?
Repeat this process for a month in advance. So plan out steps for week 1- 5 pursuant to your goals. I can’t promise it will all work out but I can guarantee that it won’t work if you don’t actually do it. Once you’ve written it out, it’s time to get out there and honor your commitments.
You can create a specific task action plan and spreadsheet, etc. as many disciplines prescribe, but I find those boring and often unnecessary for personal productivity, so start with this simpler version and add complexity and specificity to the level that you see fit.