5 Characteristics Of A Successful Goal-Setting Process

A pair of shoes stand over a sign on the road that says your goal with an arrow forward

So you’ve figured it out. You’ve decided what you want, and you feel motivated, excited, and ready to achieve it. The next step seems to be setting your goals.

But did you know that if you aren’t setting your goals with intention, or doing it correctly, you could be setting yourself up for failure before you even begin?

All of us begin setting our goals with the best of intentions. We really do want to achieve the goals that we set.

But did you know that most goals are unsuccessful? That is because many of us don’t really understand what we are doing, or that there is a science behind setting goals and successfully achieving them.

There are 5 characteristics of setting your goals that should be thought about when setting your goals.

5 Characteristics of successful goal-setting

While setting your goals, those goals must:

1) Be Specific

Having a well-defined goal is the foundation for setting any successful goal. If we don’t know what we want the finish line to be, then how do we know how to cross it?

For example, you could set a goal to “be successful” but success looks different to everyone. What does that success look like to you? Is it to land a specific job? Is there a monetary goal attached to it? What is it about being successful that you are trying to achieve?

By being specific, you are better able to develop or plan the exact steps or blueprint that you need to follow to make that goal a reality.

2) Have a deadline

When we don’t have a clear deadline, we don’t really have a goalpost. If your goal is to become a millionaire, but you don’t have a specific timeframe attached to it, it doesn’t really have any motivation or urgency behind it.

You could do the exact same thing you are doing right now and achieve that goal in the next 10, 20, 50 years.

But if you set your goal to become a millionaire by your 25th birthday, as an example, you are putting a real tangible timeline on that goal, which gives you a sense of urgency and gets you taking active steps to move towards it.

3) Be measurable

If we aren’t able to measure our progress, how do we even know if we are making progress in the first place? If we can’t tell if we are any closer to achieving our goal or not, that gives us no information to work off of.

Using the same example as above, if we wanted to be a millionaire, we would be able to track our income and the amount of money that we have coming in, so we know how close we are to achieving that goal and if we need to make any adjustments to reach it on time.

4) Be organized

It’s okay to have more than one goal at a time.

However, if you are setting an unreasonable amount of goals, or your goals are extremely complicated and scattered, you will become quickly overwhelmed and burn yourself out.

Maintaining organized steps and goals is critical to your success.

5) Be tracked or monitored

You need to be able to track and monitor your progress on a monthly, weekly, or even daily basis. The frequency that you monitor your progress depends on you, the size of the goal, and the steps you are taking toward it.

But tracking your progress can actually provide you with more motivation as you will be able to see the progress you are making.

What are some examples of goals that people set?

Some examples of goals that people set are:

Health goals

Do you have specific goals related to your physical self-care and health? Maybe you want to run a marathon or lose weight or learn to eat healthier.

Career goals

What do you want to do for a living? What kind of lifestyle do you want to live and how will your career impact that?

Self-Improvement goals

Are you currently experiencing burnout? Do you need to learn how to heal past trauma? Or to get better at stress management? Or learn how to be more productive?

Financial goals

What amount of income do you need to bring in to be able to live the lifestyle that you wish to live? How much do you need to fund other important goals or to retire at a certain age? How much do you need to have in savings if something were to happen to you?

Setting goals can help us get the things that really matter to us in life. It can also help us to become happier, healthier, and more fulfilled.

Scroll to Top