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Setting Goals

Updated: Nov 10, 2018



Howdy! This blog has been on hold for a few months because we’ve all been sucked into a really nasty combination of school, work, and sleep deprivation. Burnout, flameout, you know how it is. But hey, it’s the new year, and that means it’s time to get everything back on track.

One of the best tools for the new year and getting things done is setting goals! Or you can call them resolutions, that works too.


The whole point of setting resolutions is to have something you want to work toward. Over the course of the year, you can measure your progress against your original resolution and see whether you are making any progress towards your goals.

Now it might seem a little lame, and I am not going to bore you with talk of SMART goals. You’ve probably have already hear enough of that (if not http://topachievement.com/smart.html ). Instead, I sort of wanted to discuss some really interesting ideas about goal setting that I’ve read up on and also how to make sure that you actually manage to finish those goals. No point in setting a goal if you don’t actually do it right?


It’s a “new year” and it’s time for a “new you”. Here are some of the things I’m going to be trying out to make sure I’ll be hitting all my goals for the year. The first two are actually straight from the mouth of Warren Buffett. He’s a billionaire, so he must be doing something right.


1) Write down the top 25 goals you want to accomplish

What do you want to get done this year? Get off the Frappuccino’s? Stop eating instant noodles? Get fit? Grab a piece of paper and write them all down. If you have more than 25 then that’s no big deal. Write those down too!

If you put some time into all of this, it really forces you to think about your goals and verbalize everything that you want to do this year!


2) Circle the top 5 out of 25

Now it’s all about prioritizing. So pick the top 5 things that you want to get done this year. Circle them, and put it all on a separate piece of paper.

Next, cross everything else out. Ignore the rest of it. Burn it and toss it away if you have to.

Warren Buffett’s advice is that you need to avoid that secondary list at all costs. When you have more than 5 goals, there is a complete lack of focus. You’re trying to do too much, and ultimately you’re going to get nothing done., and at the end of the year, you aren’t going to feel like you accomplished anything.

But what if you really want to do something on that list?

Another article I read (forgot where) mentioned the idea that you actually have a lot of time. Years to be exact. What’s the point in trying to do everything at once (and get nothing done). It’s more efficient to complete one thing at a time before moving on to your next big project.

With goals, focus is everything.


3) Making Systems

Everyone is going to have bad days. Where you don’t want to do anything because there’s that test tomorrow, or you’re tired, or you can put it off until the next day. Motivation always dies out.

a. One of the most interesting ideas that I’ve encountered is that if you want to reach your goals, you have to create systems that will force you to stay on track. Here are a few ideas.

Set an automatic reminder everyday to accomplish one task (ex. @9pm do 10 pushups)

b. One of the most interesting ideas that I’ve encountered is that if you want to reach your goals, you have to create systems that will force you to stay on track. Here are a few ideas.

c. Make it hurt. The thing that hurts the most is money. Make a deal with a friend so that if you don’t meet a goal, you’re going to have to pay them or donate to a charity. (ex. I’ll pay you $50 if I don’t go to swim practice today). If you don’t want to put money, make it another punishment like swimming laps or for guys, going to do yoga

d.Schedule! Make it an expected part of your day to work toward a certain goal (ex. 4-5pm is DECA time)

Having systems makes sure that you are going to be staying on track, even through all the days when you want to give up and sleep.


4) Make it happen!

I mean this is the easy part. You know what you want to do, how to do it, now just go do it! There’s not some fancy magic formula and “waiting for the right time” is really just an excuse to procrastinate. So go out there, start hunting for opportunities, and start getting stuff done.


“New year, new you”