Why is it important to set realistic goals? What are realistic goals? Why should you set realistic goals? How does setting realistic goals affect your life? If you ask yourself these and other questions, this article has all the necessary information.
Hi, I’m Sean Galla, a facilitator for men’s support groups and forums with over a decade of experience. Part of my work entails creating safe spaces where men can learn about issues affecting their everyday lives, which includes setting realistic goals.
Knowing and understanding realistic goal-setting can go a long way in making goal-setting easier and more result-oriented. If you want to understand realistic goal setting, you are in the right place. This article contains all the information you need to help you set realistic goals.
Table of Contents:
Why is goal setting important?
Before you set a goal, it’s essential to know what a goal is. The definition of a goal, according to Merriam-Webster dictionary, is “the endpoint that a person or group aims to achieve through their efforts.”
Wikipedia says a goal is an envisioned outcome a person or group plans to achieve. A goal is an achievement you desire to accomplish in the short term or long term. Everyone wants to see a positive change in their lives and setting goals is a way to achieve that. The importance of setting realistic goals includes:
Helps to avoid Procrastination
When you set goals, you take on the responsibility of completing the task. Setting a goal differs from acting on impulse, where you have no obligation to finish the task and can put it off later. Goals hold you accountable, helping you avoid procrastination and ensuring you complete the tasks you need.
Helps in Focus and Direction
Goal setting gives you focus and a sense of direction, which help change the attitudes and behaviors needed to achieve your goals. Setting goals gives you the nudge you need to achieve mastery in improving yourself and being strong during hard times.
Goals give you inspiration and motivation. Goal setting gives you something to work for and look forward to. When you have something you focus all your energy on, it motivates you to work harder to see the results. Goals are fluid and can shift as your priorities change, and as the goals go, so does your action plan.
Allows for progress measurement
Goals allow you to track your progress. You can set objectives with a timeframe and check your progress using the timelines and milestones you set.
Helps in Decision-Making
Goals help to improve your decision-making skills, both in your personal and professional life. The goals become your guide, and before making decisions, you gauge them against the end goal and make an informed decision.
Why is it important to set realistic goals?
Today’s world is fast-paced, and you will never achieve anything if you do not set goals. Realistic goals keep us grounded and give us focus, motivation, and a sense of purpose. Setting goals is essential for your personal goals and professional development.
Ambitious goals that do not conform to reality will only serve to frustrate you and can only lead to failure. Realistic objectives improve your chances of success and motivate you to make larger long-term goals.
However, as you set your realistic goals and and become more goal oriented, you need to plan. Realistic goals are sensible, achievable goals. For instance, you cannot set a goal to lose 50 pounds in one month. It’s unrealistic and an example of some of the vague goals that will frustrate you.
Here are some of the ways you can achieve this:
Decide the Types of Goals and Break them down
To set realistic goals, you must know the type of goals you need to develop;
- You want to attain immediate goals in the shortest time possible, such as days or weeks.
- You need to attain short-term goals between six months and one year.
- Long-term goals are goals you want to achieve in the next few years and are completed by breaking them into smaller short-term goals.
Here are other goal setting questions to consider.
Write SMART Goals
For you to set realistic goals, you need to write them down. According to a study, people who write down their goals were 1.4 times more likely to achieve them. SMART is an acronym for the most important step in prioritizing goals. These are:
It is essential to be specific and focused to achieve your objective. When setting your goal, make sure to answer the five “W” questions:
- What do you want to accomplish?
- Why is this goal important?
- Who else is involved in achieving this goal?
- Where will this goal take place?
- Which resources or limitations will affect achieving the ultimate goal?
These questions will help you formulate clear and specific goals that are easier to focus on, stay motivated, and achieve.
Having measurable goals is crucial as it helps you track your progress and drives you. Evaluating your progress enables you to stay focused, meet deadlines, and experience the excitement of getting closer to achieving your goals.
A measurable goal is to answer questions such as how much, how many, and how you will know you have reached the goal.
Achieving success is all about setting goals that are both challenging and achievable. It’s essential to strike a balance between the two, so you’re not setting yourself up for failure. When you’ve identified a goal that you can realistically accomplish, take a moment to consider any resources or opportunities that could help you get there faster.
With an achievable goal, you’ll be able to answer essential questions like: How can I make this happen? Is this feasible, given my current financial situation? You’ll be one step closer to achieving your dreams by setting yourself up for success.
This step ensures that your goal holds significant value and aligns with your values. While seeking assistance in achieving our goals is essential, maintaining control is equally crucial. Ultimately, you are responsible for performing your objectives.
Therefore, ensuring that your goals are worth pursuing and relevant to your values is vital. Your goals should answer ‘yes’ to the following questions: Is it worthwhile? Is it pertinent to my values?
Having deadlines for your goals is crucial in your professional life. It provides a clear target and ensures each task contributes to your bigger picture. With deadlines in place, you can confidently work towards achieving your long-term objectives and remain on track.
Why is it important to set realistic goals – the benefits
Being organized and setting realistic goals has numerous benefits, personally or at work.
Realistic goals help maximize productivity, enhance time -management, and eliminate guesswork. They simplify prioritizing tasks and keep you organized.
With them, you’ll focus on making progress and be less overwhelmed and more productive. Be honest and seek help if needed. Achieving realistic personal or professional goals is a great way to achieve success.
Setting attainable goals is a powerful way to boost your self-confidence, sense of accomplishment, and motivation.
When you believe you can succeed, you’re more likely to take on new challenges and enthusiastically tackle complex tasks as your problem-solving skills improve. On the other hand, unrealistic goals can be demotivating and erode your confidence.
Reduces Stress and Anxiety
Realistic goals reduce stress and anxiety. They provide a map to success, giving you control and blocking unexpected events. Fear of failure is removed when you have a clear path to success, unlocking your potential without feeling overwhelmed and protecting your mental health.
When you achieve a goal, your brain produces the dopamine hormone that induces satisfaction, pleasure, and motivation. This feel-good hormone significantly lowers stress levels and is great for you’ your overall health.
Development of Positive Habits
Setting realistic goals is a great way to promote positive habits. You are more likely to adopt healthy and positive behaviors with achievable targets. For instance, if you want to lose weight, you will start making healthier diet choices and exercising regularly.
You will also begin to manage your time better to accommodate your new habits. It is said that it takes 21 days to form a habit, and soon, you will become committed to your routines.
You will have more time for self-care if you limit your social media use, and you can balance your social and work life. The positive habits can also lead you to learn new skills that serve you personally and at work.
How MensGroup Can Help with Setting Realistic Goals
You can sometimes feel lonely on your self-actualization journey, even when surrounded by loved ones. It helps to have a group of men who understand the self-discovery and realistic goal-setting journey from a personal perspective.
One of the best gifts you can give yourself this New Year while setting realistic goals is to join a men-only self-improvement and support group like MensGroup. Self-improvement groups offer a wealth of resources and much-needed support. The group also keeps you firmly grounded and accountable for achieving your goals.
Setting realistic goals is all about commitment and planning. For assured success, ensure the goals are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Relevant, and Time-bound). For most people, setting goal and following through is a challenge. Being part of a supportive community can go a long way in ensuring success when it comes to working on your goals.
Joining a support group like Mensgroup.com can give you the support you need to not only set goals but also achieve them.