In going through my daily routine lately, I’ve realized just how important short-term goals are to ultimately reaching our long-term goals. We have short-term goals for everything, even if we don’t actually know we have short-term goals…so why not allow yourself to feel that much more accomplished?
In my opinion, I believe everyone should write down their goals. For at least the past decade I’ve gone through notebooks of goals both short-term and long-term. Having the goals on paper, at least for me, makes them “real”.
Say my long-term goals are to lose 30 pounds, run a 6:00 mile, and squat 405×12. If these are my only goals, I’m going to be waiting a long time for any reward. I’m sure there are some people out there who only have long-term goals and do fine with them…but for most of us we need some gas in our tank every now and then. Could you listen to the same song on repeat without eventually getting bored? No, probably not, it’s nice to have a selection.
Now with these long-term goals above, we can make lists of short-term goals such as:
- Cutting out certain foods for that day/week
- Carbohydrate cycling
- Calorie restriction
- Doing a specific amount of cardio for that day/week
- Burning a certain number of calories for that day/week
- Rep goals on squat (405×1, 405×2)
- Running at a certain pace (a fast .25 time) and then targeting to beat that .25 time and work your way up from there
Obviously there are thousands of other short-term goals you can have to reach any long-term goals, these are just a few examples. Goals like these are just going to bring out that inner motivation when you most need it and drive you to reaching your long-term goal(s).
Lets think outside the box a little bit now. If something else in your life goes wrong, you’re most likely knocked off routine a bit, right? What we now have here is the bigger picture. Daily short-term goals should not just be within our diet/workout but our life in general.
When you start anything new whether it be photography, hiking, juggling, creating a look-a-like Captain Planet costume, etc you’re not going to know how to perfect it right off the bat (unless you’re some crazy prodigy). Since I tend to ramble on, I’ll get to my point. The point here is that whether you know it or not you’re going to have short-term goals. These short-term goals could be things such as learning about part of the camera, understanding a compass, juggling two balls at a time, or figuring out the exact colors of the Captain Planet costume. Goals make you feel accomplished and drive you to be that much better so why not get that free motivation? You’re accomplishing them anyways!
Not only do we subtly create short-term goals without realizing it like the ones above but we also do in our daily routine. Taking our vitamins, brushing our teeth, packing a lunch, remembering certain things, reading the paper, and so on. When your routine is on point, you feel good. You’ve created discipline and discipline was created through the goals you’ve set to reach in your daily routine.
My BIGGEST short-term goal is that when I have an off day where I mess something up or go off routine I remember that once I wake up to a new day, it’s a day to start fresh and go back on routine rather than dwell on the past. This is the most important goal in my whole routine.
The point of this whole post is that, IN MY OPINION:
- Short-term goals create motivation. The motivation to reach your goals creates discipline and routine. Discipline makes you feel accomplished.
- Short-term goals should not just be limited to your diet/workout but your whole life
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