Do you remember being that go-getter when you were just starting your career? The world was your oyster and your goal setting were on point. Now that you are 25-30 years into your career, your life is shifting and changing, and new goals need to be set and achieved. Whether it is retirement, to a more fulfilling life, to more time with family, setting goals and working towards smaller subgoals can help you achieve what you want faster… yes faster!
What are some of the things that become more important as we age? Have you considered areas of your life like finances, retirement, career, personal, heath & wellness? Let us take a closer look at what each could mean to you:
- Financial: Does financial freedom sound good? How about not having to work but wanting to work. This goal could mean a transition to a passion project or work that is more meaningful to your life.
- Retirement: Does retiring earlier than you thought get you excited? Do you have the financial plan in place to get you there? Are you able to work effectively with your financial planner to make something like this happen?
- Career: Perhaps you are not quite ready for retirement, but you want to either level up or change careers altogether? Working with a career coach can help you develop a strategy to make a meaningful move to something that will be more fulfilling at this time in your life.
- Personal: This could mean anything that is important to you. From spending more time with family to writing the book or painting a picture that you have been putting off.
- Health & Wellness: Have you been holding off starting that new exercise routine or lifestyle plan? Are you holding off going for your annual check up.
Now that some of these examples have helped you think of some of your own, let’s look at how you can set that goal you want to achieve and achieve it! Try this exercise to get your goal-setting juices flowing again:
- What is your goal?
- Where do you see yourself in 5 years? (too far? Try 3 years or even 1-year goal setting).
- What do you need to stop doing to make it happen?
- What do you need to continue doing to make it happen?
- What is something new you need to start doing to make it happen?
- What do you need to update/upgrade to help get you there faster and effectively?
Next, draw a line on a page with the word NOW on the left end and GOAL ACHIEVED on the right end. Work your way across that line adding items dots for items you will need to accomplish and timelines for when you need to accomplish those items.
BOOM! There you have it, the beginning of your career/life goals.
So now that you have your goal in mind, how can you be sure that it is realistic? Teresa Gabriele, Lead Career Strategy Coach with www.sourc3dCAREERS.ca says, “You want to be sure if you are going to go after a long-term goal, that is actually realistic and achievable. If it are not, you will quickly get discouraged and give up. I always recommend using the S.M.A.R.T. methodology to clients as it ensures you are creating goals you will feel confident achieving.”
Let’s review this this method and other steps you can follow to ensure your goal is attainable:
1. Make it a S.M.A.R.T goal. What does this mean?
- Specific: do not be vague, zero in on what you want.
- Measurable: give yourself a way to measure it.
- Attainable: Is it possible to accomplish.
- Relevant: does your goal align with what you want to
- Time-based: give yourself a deadline or you will spin
2. Assess where you are today first. Then, review exactly where you want to be. Is there a logical path between the two? Meaning, are there skills, or competencies you can develop or education you need to complete to achieve your goal? Add those into your timeline and research where you can find more information.
3. Leverage other people’s experience and expertise. Based on your goal, who do you know that has succeeded in what you want to achieve. Research and find some contacts to reach out to that might be able to help you. For career goals, try connecting with your network for added support and advise. Former leaders or colleagues are a great place to start. And if you want to stay with the company you are with, seek out leadership support to help you align your career goals and timelines. There are experts that can help for any type of goal. Ask for referrals from friends and family.
Are you getting excited about finally being able to achieve some of the goals you have been putting off? Do you believe that you can continue to achieve goals at any age? It is exciting to believe that with a little strategy and planning, you can achieve whatever you put your mind to, regardless of how far along you are in your career. Afterall, this is what we tell today’s youth, right? Go for your dreams! Keep setting your goals and going for your dreams at any age!