I Did It! by Cindy Stradling CSL, CPC

There is something amazing that occurs when people set personal or professional goals and achieve those goals. Individuals become more confident in their ability to reach for something bigger and better. They gain self-awareness of their abilities, which is often a stumbling block for trying new things.

Businesses often look at goal setting as a measurable activity to help employees at all levels to continue to grow. In some cases, goal setting is rather arbitrary, and employees often feel it is simply a hoop they have to jump through to get a good performance evaluation.

To understand the benefit of creating and achieving goals, consider the following benefits and long-term outcomes of the process.

Personally Meaningful Goals 

The leader should encourage team members to set meaningful goals. These are not always the KPIs listed on the performance evaluation, although those are also important from a business perspective.

When employees create a personal goal, they become accountable to themselves for achieving that goal. They are motivated to obtain the skills, knowledge, expertise, or experiences because it is personal and meaningful. Goals that are highly desired are also highly motivating, and people who are motivated are more engaged in all aspects of life, including their work.

A Sense of Accomplishment

Taking on something you want to accomplish and seeing success is an uplifting experience. This is true if you are learning a new process at work or learning to cook for the first time. Setting a goal and seeing the progress made toward achieving that goal builds self-confidence and a sense of accomplishment.

Improved Optimism 

Over time, it can be easy to focus on things that did not work out in life. This is a natural human reaction to loss, frustration, or dissatisfaction with life. By setting attainable but still challenging goals, people are able to see their potential again.

Meeting goals creates a path for achieving more in the future. When people are confident they can impact their future, they are more optimistic and more likely to take opportunities that allow them to continue to grow and thrive.

Create Big Goals and Milestones

To help develop optimism, self-confidence, and a sense of accomplishment and pride in reaching your goals, it is important to create a goal structure. This includes the big picture goal or the long-term goal, as well as micro, mini, or milestone goals along the way.

The milestone goals provide a set of stepping stones to reaching the big goal. As you accomplish each milestone, you become more confident and motivated to keep going to meet your long-term goal.

Achieving important goals is a wonderful way to celebrate your personal and professional growth. Take the time to acknowledge your achievement and accomplishments and to evaluate how reaching milestones and big goals have an impact on how you approach new challenges in your life.