Goal Setting – Characteristics of Successful People

Matt Richardson

Some time ago I wrote about goal setting and about how it was a common characteristic of successful people in a variety of fields, be it business, sport or life.

Over the last few years I have taken it upon myself every January to write down what I want to achieve for the next 12 months.  These goals are quite specific, so they can be easily measured and they usually cover a variety of topics including health, fitness, business, finance, leisure, learning, family, new challenges, travel, etc.

I thought it would be an appropriate time to report back on how I have fared with the goals I set in January 2016.

This time last year I wrote down 15 goals that I wanted to achieve in 2016.  I achieved 13 of these however there were 2 goals I clearly did not achieve, which I am disappointed about.  One of the goals I did achieve was running in 3 Fun Runs, one of which included running my first ever half-marathon, which I did alongside my son Riley.

The two goals I did not achieve, which I am disappointed about were:

  1. To try stand up paddle boarding (this may sound like a breeze for some and not all that challenging but I tend to have the balance of a new born baby giraffe); and
  2. Learning to love playing golf again by playing regularly (I only played 4 rounds – all badly!).

Today I have set myself 18 challenges I wish to achieve by the end of 2017 across all areas of my life.  Some are new challenges which will require me to get out of my comfort zone.  Some will only require me to make a conscious decision to take action with minimal or no physical effort, just a change in my thinking.

All of my goals are achievable, all are measurable and many are extremely simple.  But some of these simple ones just require some discipline.

What I have found is by writing down my goals it helps give me a focus.  I keep these goals at the front of my diary, so I see them every night when I write a few words about my day.  Therefore, every night I get reminded about what I am trying to achieve during the year and this helps to keep me on track.

In my situation, if these goals were not written down, this would reduce the chances of me achieving what I set for myself.  So in 2017 I hope to achieve what I didn’t achieve in 2016 as well as at least one Learn to Surf Lesson (See point above re balance – I also hope the surf lifesavers are on duty that day!) and running the Great Ocean Road Half Marathon finishing in Apollo Bay!

Good luck with your goal setting.  Write them down – it will make a difference.