The goal setting theory was created by Edwin A. Locke. His theory is based strongly on Aristotle’s theory of “final cause” which essentially dictates that change can be willed and caused by purposeful action.

The Origin of Goal Setting:

To dig a little deeper in Aristotle’s theory: he debated that there was a direct relationship between goals and effort. Ultimately meaning setting goals would encourage effort and therefore lead to those goals being met. 

How to get started with setting your goals: 

When setting goals, it is important to keep a few things in mind. One of them being that the goal should lead to a greater level of productivity, happiness and efficiency either within an individual or an organization. How can you make sure your goals fit this? Well - 

  • Make sure your goal is clear. That is it easily understood, and the concept can be grasped 100%
  • Once you have your goal you need a plan for dedication. Understand exactly what steps you need to take to reach that goal. 
  • Make sure your goal is challenging. If it is too easy, you will end up getting lazy and giving up. 
  • Encourage your friends and colleagues to give you feedback. It will make sure that you are constantly improving, revising, and will ultimately ensure a greater level of success. 

Although this may seem a daunting task - there is no reason you can't get it done. OnlifeCoach is a great place to start as a resource for you and setting appropriate goals. With a personal life coach there is nothing you can accomplish. 

Looking at a real-life example for how to set a goal:

An easier way to remember the elements that consist of a good goal is the acronym S.M.A.R.T. 

So let’s see with an example. You want to lose weight. 

  • Specific: define how much weight. Let’s make it 20 pounds 
  • Measurable: break it down so it’s easier to track. Have a minimum amount of weight you need to lose per time increment so you can measure your success
  • Achievable: don’t push it to be too hard. For example - losing 20 pounds in 1 week is not achievable and definitely not healthy. 
  • Realistic: let’s say you sign up for the gym and you say you will work out 2 times a day everyday of the week. This is not realistic. Maybe you will have a late meeting, dinner with friends, and you will end up being unable to keep up with your promise. So make it realistic, give yourself some flexibility. If you make it too hard and unrealistic you will end up killing your own motivation 
  • Time-targeted: Once you have figured out the previous, make a realistic time frame for yourself. For example - losing 20 pounds in around 3 months is a reasonable time frame. 

Try to have a friend to check-in! Make sure you are on track with your S.M.A.R.T goal or use the resource of a professional life coach to help you stay on target and on course. 

The best thing about goal setting?

Now that you understand the concept and the elements that go into setting a good goal the best part is still yet to come. Goal setting approach works for every aspect of life. You can apply this to saving money, quitting smoking, losing weight, improving a relationship, a business plan, a KPI, essentially anything! Plus once your mind becomes adjusted to approaching goals in this structured manner, it will become easy for you to continuously set goals and reach them. This is the whole purpose of improving your way of thinking, so that positivity and structure can flow into every aspect of your life. So take on the challenge, and know that you can have a certified professional life coach by your side every step of the way.