Before we know it, summer will be wrapping up and families everywhere will begin preparing for a new school year. Seasonal changes are some of my favorite times of the year because they signal upcoming change and transition. Whenever the weather begins to change, it feels almost as if we have a fresh start.
Which seems like the perfect time to set new goals and re-evaluate those in progress.
>> Download the free Goal Setting Worksheet here! <<
Goal setting is an excellent habit for everyone – whether you’re still in school, thriving at work, starting from scratch, or simply looking to improve in any area of your life. Goals help maintain motivation over time, drive us to become the best version of ourselves, and show us that the possibilities are truly endless.
When first sitting down to set a goal, narrowing your focus can feel a bit overwhelming. During transitional periods, it’s easy to find yourself with so many broad ideas that it feels impossible to accomplish them all.
Finding a specific goal setting worksheet or format to follow when brainstorming can be incredibly helpful. These goal setting worksheets and templates help identify what you’d like to accomplish, narrow your focus, create measurable goals, and avoid the initial feelings of confusion.
Goal setting worksheets are the first step to accomplishing some of your biggest goals.
>> Download this free Goal Setting Worksheet to get started anytime! <<
Whether you’re setting goals to improve your health, finally set a new PR, make more money, start a new career, advance at work, enhance your family life, or anything in between – positive change is always possible.
As you begin the goal setting process for this upcoming season, it’s important to remember that no matter what goal you setting, achieving it will be a process. Dreaming big is always encouraged, but don’t let it make you feel overwhelmed.
Dare to write down your wildest dreams as you follow along in the goal setting worksheet, and you might be surprised how attainable these dreams feel by the end. Consistent, small actions often add up to a massive result.
This goal setting worksheet takes you through a 15 step process.
The Ultimate Goal Setting Checklist
1. Begin by brainstorming ideas of goals you want to accomplish.
This is where you write down everything that comes to mind – leave nothing out. Write down the things you’ve always wanted to accomplish, your wildest dreams, how you want to improve, and goals that have been in the back of your mind for a while.
2. Select one specific goal to focus on at a time.
Here is when things get challenging – it’s time to pick one goal. That’s not to say that you can’t be working towards multiple goals at one time, but you’ll want to follow this process for each and every goal you set. Choose one goal to focus on for now, and complete this entire process before beginning the next.
3. Write down your goal in big letters, print it out, and hang it somewhere you will see it.
Once you’ve selected your goal, it’s time to make it known! There is no sense setting a goal and hiding it out of sight. Write down your goal, make a poster, tape it to your planner, or hang it on the fridge. Be proud of the goal you’ve set.
4. Check to make sure your goal is measurable.
There is no sense setting a goal that you will never be able to accomplish. Goal setting allows you to work towards something with the idea that it will eventually be completed. Determining how you will know when you have accomplished your goal is key here.
For example, setting a goal to “become healthier” may sound ideal, but how will you know when you are “healthier”? Instead, try setting specific goals that will help improve your health – such as run 3 times a week, eat 4 servings of veggies each day, meditate for 5 minutes before bed, etc.
5. Write down where you are now and keep it with your goal.
Acknowledging your starting point is a key point in the goal setting process. Write down exactly where you are now in relation to your goal, and keep it handy to use during regular check-ins.
When you are halfway through this process and it feels like you’re nowhere near accomplishing your goal, reminding yourself where you started may help you visualize the progress you might not even realize you have made so far.
6. Create regular check in points to assess your progress.
Setting a goal and tucking it away for months may still leave you with the best of intentions, but it’s likely that you won’t progress too quickly. Determine when you will check-in with your progress as you work towards your goal.
Whether you check in once each day, once a week or once a month, creating a routine that works for you and your specific goal is key. Once you’ve set your schedule, program reminders in your calendar or write them in your planner so you won’t forget.
7. Give your goal a deadline.
Nothing provides more motivation than knowing you have an upcoming deadline. Setting a goal with an indefinite end date may feel motivating in the beginning, but when life gets busy it’ll be that much easier to put it off. Decide when you will accomplish your goal (and be realistic) – and then write it down!
8. Complete one task towards accomplishing your goal immediately after setting it.
This Goal Setting Worksheet provides a great template to outline your progress and keep track of action in the future, but an important step in starting the process is doing something right now to get started.
9. Create an action plan for accomplishing your goal.
This is where things get real! It’s one thing to say you want to accomplish something, but an entirely different thing to create a plan to make it happen.
Break your goal down into smaller micro-goals that you’ll be able to accomplish along the way. Really take your time imagining the process of accomplishing your goal, and set up an action plan to help you achieve the end result.
10. Create a plan or strategy to overcome setbacks.
No matter how motivated and prepared you feel, setbacks and obstacles are bound to appear. Rather than letting yourself get down about the delay, create a plan ahead of time to surpass any obstacles that will appear. This might involve re-evaluating your progress, taking a day off, or being flexible in your steps.
11. Tell someone else about your goal.
Once time begins to pass, holding ourselves accountable with our goals becomes a bit more challenging – especially when your goal affects no one but yourself. Sharing your goals with at least one other person is a great way to find accountability when it’s tempting to quit later on in the process.
12. Research your goal or find a community of others with similar goals.
Another great strategy to maintain motivation with long-term goals is to research others who share similar goals or join a community. It doesn’t matter whether you find a local group or online support system, all that matters is that you’re able to hear from others with a similar mindset when you need that extra boost.
13. Lessen distractions and temptations.
No matter what type of goal you set, there will always be temptations to quit or halt your progress. Maybe those temptations come in physical form or just mental thoughts, they can feel awfully powerful in weak moments.
To avoid this, try to minimize distractions and temptations right from the get go. For example, if you’ve set a goal to improve your eating habits, start by throwing away all the unhealthy food in your cabinets. If you’re planning to exercise at a certain time each day, set your clothes and gear out ahead of time so you don’t have to think about it when the time comes.
14. Create milestones and celebrate each one along the way.
This Goal Setting Worksheet is especially helpful for creating long-term goals, but accomplishing those goals certainly feels far off at the beginning of the process. Create milestones within your micro-goals to give you something to celebrate along the way. Not only will accomplishing these milestones help you stay motivated, but they’ll remind you how far you’ve come each step of the way.
15. Create daily tasks and habits that will help you achieve your goal.
Regardless of whether your goal involves completely changing your lifestyle or just implementing one simple habit, you’ll probably have to change something in your regular routine to get there. When creating a game plan for your end goal, think through any daily tasks or habits that you can implement to help you make progress each day.
>> For a template of these steps, download the free Goal Setting Worksheet! <<
Goal setting can certainly feel like an overwhelming process, but when broken down, accomplishing big goals feels much more manageable. This Goal Setting Worksheet is a great way to work through these steps and accomplish some of your biggest goals.
With a new season approaching, it’s the perfect time to finish the year out strong with some big goals or refocus on those goals we set at New Year’s. Cheers to a new opportunity of growth, change and continuous improvement.
More goal setting worksheets and tips:
- 3 Genius Strategies to Achieve Your Fitness Goals
- 10 Steps to Accomplish Any Running Goal
- Printable 2019 Fitness Goal Planner