Getting organized will make your life easier and more enjoyable. Getting organized will also require you to set goals.
I love Hyrum W. Smith’s definition of a goal:
Goals are dreams with deadlines.
Goals, then tell us what we need to do, and when. Without goals, we won’t know where we are or where we are going. But, when we approach getting organized with well-developed goals, we can tell where we’ve been and where we’re going.
What are the signposts of well-developed goals? They create motivation, help you overcome confusion and master adversity. They establish an orderly way to proceed and keep you focused. But most of all, they help you measure your success.
Where to start? I like to use the word G.O.A.L.S. as an acronym for how I manage my goal setting.
Grand Scheme. Let’s say you want to remodel your kitchen or streamline your office at work. How do you want it to look? What new features do you require? How much money are you willing to spend? What’s the big picture? Before you get buried by all of the details, you need to have a clear vision of what you are trying to achieve.
Options. The next step in making your vision become reality is to list all of the options to achieve your goal. I agree with the old adage “a plan is not a plan unless it is written down.” It doesn’t matter if you make your list digitally or on paper. Just do it! Now you won’t have to remember whether you wanted stackable wicker boxes or shelves in your remodeled kitchen.
Analyze. Now, think through and prioritize your options. Determine which options best achieve your vision and purpose. The old carpenter’s saying, “measure twice, cut once” is a maxim that applies to all action plans. No one likes rework. Now you have a clear direction and a general time line. You don’t want that new refrigerator to show up before the flooring goes in.
Logistics. If needed, break down a goal into small steps with a due date for each step. Today, you can tackle the purchase of new hardware for the new kitchen cabinets. Tomorrow, you can confront the task of replacing all the pots and pans into their cabinet.
Schedule. Enter each step into your calendar – digital or paper. Remember, a plan is not a plan unless it is written down. Then use your schedule as a check list for success. Don’t focus on what you didn’t get done; stay focused on what you need to do next.
There’s no greater sense of satisfaction than achieving one’s goals on time and under budget. If you know you have habitual problems staying on track, share your goals with someone you trust. A trusted friend will help you stay accountable to your plan and to achieving your goals – and your dreams!