You Need Milestones to Chase Your Dreams
When it comes to chasing our dreams the only way I know to track our progress is to create milestones. And not to check boxes on the preverbal roadmap of dream chasing. Milestones show us what we are accomplishing and allow us to see how we accomplish even more.
This is where creating and accomplishing goals play into chasing our dreams.
If you have stopped to read any of the statistics or articles on goal setting before, you will have read two things.
- People without goals are not as successful as they hope to be.
- People who don’t write down goals are less likely to accomplish their goals.
What I have found over the years of dream chasing is how important goals are in the grand picture of seeing your dreams come true. Much like how a life plan helps us create a plan toward chasing our dreams, goals help us create and see milestones along the way.
Making Your Invisible Dreams Visible
“Setting goals is the first step from turning the invisible to visible.” — Tony Robbins
When we decide we want to chase our dreams, we must decide to go all in. We must decide what it is we want to accomplish in order to set proper goals.
This is why goal setting comes after life planning. When we create a life plan, we already set up where we are going and know where we are right now.
Goal setting helps us create the markers and milestones along the way toward seeing our dreams come true. Goals give us momentum to push through the adversity we experience while chasing our dreams.
In this post, I will share with you everything I know about setting goals and accomplishing them.
Do I Need to Set Goals or Not
This year, there was a huge push not to set goals. People were sharing about how terrible they felt last year when they failed to meet their goals or how they never really followed through with achieving their goals.
So, should we even set goals to try and see our dreams come true?
The problem for so many people is how they haven’t created goals which will help them succeed. And their inability to follow through because of fear or poor goal creation holds them back.
This was me about ten years ago. I would set goals at the beginning of the year, and then never go back and look at them. I would have these really vague, general ideas of things I wanted to accomplish, but never create action steps or any plans to achieve anything.
This is why goals fail.
And this guide will help you achieve your goals. This guide will help you create goals you can track and see happen. In this guide you will be given a plan and steps to review and adjust your goals. This plan will give you the ability to succeed in setting and achieving your goals.
And in turn, see your dreams come true.
Maximize Your Goals
Below you will be able to find how to create goals every year. However, you need to know one thing about setting goals for a year: You cannot set more than five to seven goals.
Well, 5–7 goals are really the max amount you can accomplish in 12 months if you are trying to complete some really big goals. Trying to do more than this can make it difficult to devote time every month with everything else you have going on in life.
When I first started creating goals, I tried have 10 goals for each year. What happened? I only completed one or two because I was spreading myself thin and not allowing there to be some flex with a few goals because of every day life.
Remember, 5–7 goals will be enough for milestones along the path to your dreams.
S.M.A.R.T.E.R. Goals for Your Dreams
“Few things in life pay such rich dividends for such a modest investment.” — Michael Hyatt
You have probably heard of the S.M.A.R.T. goal system (specific, measurable, actionable, relatable, time-bound). This is a great system. In fact, when I finally got tired of never accomplishing my goals, I learned about this system and started to see some of my goals achieved.
And then, I learned about the “ER” in goal setting.
Let’s start putting some goals together using the SMARTER System. We will walk through each part in order to help you create goals you can achieve. And understand how this system can work for you.
Sounds pretty simple right? Just write something down that is specific. The question is: how specific do I need to be? And the answer: the more specific you are, the easier it will be to quantify your results along the way.
For example, if you want to lose weight, to be more specific, how much weight do you want to lose? Better yet, what weight would you like to be at the end of pursuing your goal?
A specific goals says this: I will weigh 200 lbs.
We want to quantify our goals. To make a goal measurable, we need to be able to see progress over time. Say your goals is to write a novel. How do we make it measurable?
You will need to make it very specific and measurable by going into more detail which you can track. In this specific goal for writing a novel the goals says:
I will complete writing a 50,000 word novel.
Every goal should be actionable in terms of getting somewhere. However, when writing goals, we are talking about writing it as an action. Not merely saying, “I want to read 24 books in a year.”
The action is saying you ‘will’ or simply ‘read’ in this example. It is about doing it. And this is one reason goals are great milestones to your dreams. You are taking action in order to see your dreams come true. So try this:
I will read 24 books.
Relevant or Relatable
The ‘R’ in the equation is relevant or relatable. Is your goal relevant or relatable to your life. When you are setting goals, this is the pragmatic look to what you want to do. When you set a goal you need to think about your current situation.
Some people will tell you to make a ‘10X Goal,’ create a goal that is nearly impossible to force you to stretch yourself. While I think this is good, its not for the first timer, or for someone struggling at their goals. You need to create goals you can accomplish at your stage in life.
Are you a father of three small children who works two jobs? You may not be able to workout 3 hours a day if you want to reach 3% body fat. Try this:
I will decrease my percent body fat by 10%, my start percent is _______.
Every goal needs a deadline. Why? So you are forced to take action in a certain timeframe. Simply saying you will do something isn’t good enough.
You need to say when you will complete it. This way you will need to map you path to success. Otherwise, you will always have the goal but never have urgency to accomplish it. Going back to the novel example:
I will write a 50,000 word novel by December 31st.
This is where the rubber meets the road when it comes to your goals. We need to regularly evaluate our progress. When I ask people how often they looked at their goals, they say “A few times over the year.”
This is why people fail at their goals. I evaluate my goals every month and every week I read them. This helps me remember what I am trying to do and makes sure I take action every week.
If there is anything you do differently about your goals, this needs to be it.
Reward or Re-visit
I have seen this ‘R’ as two different categories. However, I think rewards are something which help us more, and evaluate (the previous category) seems to be better than merely re-visit our goals.
Every goal and milestone needs a reward. We love getting something for a job well done. And when we are working toward our dreams, these little earned items help us to celebrate our milestones and be ready for the next step. Here is an example of a reward for paying off debt:
The Road is in Front of You
You may have really struggled with goals before. And if you are like me, you might have even failed all of the goals you set for yourself in a year. But this doesn’t have to be true of you anymore.
“You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.” — C.S. Lewis
I love this quote because it reminds me how the goals we set for ourselves now, no matter our age or station in life, will help us change our story in the end. They will help us chase our dreams and see them come true.