- Ryan C. Greene
Setting S.T.U.P.I.D. Goals Makes It Impossible For You To Quit
Goal setting. It's one of the cornerstones of any success blueprint. Every professional has been through some level of goal setting training. Who hasn't been taught how to set S.M.A.R.T. goals a hundred times in their career? It's become one of those concepts that we all know is critical, yet we seem to also take for granted.
Think about the last big goals you set. Did you achieve them or did you quit? Why do so many of us give up on our goals that once meant so much to us when we were crafting them? If we're setting S.M.A.R.T. goals, you know, specific, measurable, action-oriented, realistic, time-sensitive goals, then why do so many of us continue to fall short on achieving them? More importantly, why do so many of us not even care when we do?
That's the question I've solved when I created S.T.U.P.I.D. Goals. Just like S.MA.R.T. goals, S.T.U.P.I.D. goals is an acronym. Each letter stands for an important element necessary for setting goals that will be impossible for you to quit. S.T.U.P.I.D goals fill in the missing elements of effective goal setting and help you plan for obstacles before you begin. When you know what to expect and how to better deal with the roadblocks you'll inevitably face along the way, you will have far greater success in achieving your goals.
So what are S.T.U.P.I.D Goals? Let's get to it!
SACRIFICE: What are you willing to give up to achieve your goal?
Know what you are willing to give up before you get started is the most critical part of setting goals you won't quit on before completing. Far too often, leaders set great goals on paper without ever contemplating the true price it will take to achieve it. You need to know going in just how much time, money, family time, travel, late nights, and more, it will take to achieve your goal. Are you willing to miss the kid's recitals and date night with your spouse in order to achieve your goal? How much money are you willing to sink into your idea before you decide "enough is enough"? You don't want to wait until you're deep into your journey to then realize the road is too rough for you to tread. Take an honest inventory of all the necessary sacrifices your goal requires and decide if you're willing to do that.
TEAM: Who is going to help you achieve your goal?
John C. Maxwell said "No great accomplishment was ever achieved by one person alone." Any goal worth achieving is going to require a team who helps you achieve it. Don't wait until your back is against the wall to then start trying to find help. Expect upfront to need other people to help you be great. People are you #1 resource in business and leadership. The weak leader says "If it's going to get done right, I have to do it myself." The stronger leader asks "Who do I know who can do this task better than me?"
UPLIFTING: Where is your goal taking you that's better than now?
What good is a goal if it doesn't take you to a higher level in some area of your life? The whole purpose of setting goals is because there's something out there that's better than what you have, somewhere out there that's better than where you are, someone out there who's better than who you are. The pitfall most goal setting exercises fall into is they never force you to explicitly articulate and illustrate what the thing is. If there's some level you're trying to achieve, you need to as vividly and explicitly as possible articulate that when setting your goals. Being able to look at that new level and see it before you reach it, will motivate you in ways unimaginable during the tough times. It's that better aspiration that will drive you when you want to quit. If you don't have that written out, you'll find yourself quitting every time the road get rough.
PLAN: How do you plan to achieve your goal?
"He who fails to plan, plans to fail." That quote is attributed to Winston Churchill with a little ghostwriting from Benjamin Franklin. "Poor execution will kill even the greatest of ideas". That quote is attribute to ME. (Did you peep that double entendre?) Your goal is only as strong as your plan to achieve it. Here's why your team is so vital. You won't have all the answers. If you think you do have all the answers, I can assure you they're not all the best answers. Collaboration trumps isolation all day. Don't confuse your "plan" with your "strategy" or your "tools". Your PLAN is the detailed day-by-day measurable activities you will use to reach your goal. Your strategy is the means by which you will accomplish your plan. Your tools are the specific things you use to implement your strategy. So your plan may be to reach 1,000 new prospects in the next six months. Your strategy may be to do a daily online social media blitz. Your tools would then be Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Too often I see people confuse their tools with their plan. "Facebook" is not a plan, it's a tool.
INSPIRED: Why are you going after your goal?
Inspiration is not to be confused with Uplifting. When discussing making sure your goal is uplifting, it was more about WHERE you want to go. When discussing making sure your goals are inspired, this is about understanding WHY you want to got there. If your why is big enough, the how will figure itself out. Every goal you set must have a strong level of inspiration behind it or else why would you even pursue it? When determining your inspiration for your goals, I'd challenge you to do a few things. First, use something you can be proud of and enjoy as your inspiration. Secondly, make it about someone other than yourself. It's much easier to quit on yourself than it is to quit on someone who's counting on you. Maybe it's your kids, maybe your spouse or parents, maybe it's your team, or maybe it's total strangers who will benefit from your achievement. Finally, find inspiration that will make you cry if you quit. If the thought of quitting on your goal doesn't bring real tears to your eyes, then your why isn't big enough and your goal isn't as inspired as it could be.
DEADLINE: When do you plan to achieve your goal?
We've covered the Who, What, Where, How, and Why and all that's left is the When. Every goal needs to have a deadline attached. A goal without a deadline is simply a dream. You have to set a date and push for it. A 90-Day Blitz. A 24-Hour Marathon. Lose 15 pounds in 30 days. It doesn't matter the goal, if there's no deadline attached, it's a pointless venture. There's something about knowing in your mind that something has to get done by a certain date. Pareto's 80/20 Rule speaks to the idea that 80% of any task gets done in the last 20% of the time. So if that's true, which I believe it is, then it's important to set that deadline so that your 80% kicks in. Think about how much more powerful "My goal is to lose 15 pounds in the next 30 days." sounds over "My goal is to lose 15 pounds." See the difference? Martin Luther King, Jr. talked about "the fierce urgency of now". When accomplishing goals, a deadline builds in an automatic fierce urgency which pushes us to action.
Get a copy of "Setting S.T.U.P.I.D. Goals" Audio Training for FREE.
Setting goals is critical to your success, but your success is measured by actually achieving those goals you set. When you begin setting S.T.U.P.I.D. goals, it will become impossible for you to quit on your goals because you've now set goals based on what truly matters to you and moves you. It's my goal to see more people set goals that work for them so they can achieve the success they desire. That being said, I want you to have this information and not just read it, but apply it to your life right away. You can get a FREE copy of my audio download "Setting S.T.U.P.I.D. Goals" by texting the word STUPID to (614) 333-0338. You will receive an audio download as well as a "Setting S.T.U.P.I.D. Goals" Worksheet for you to begin setting your goals today.