OK, here's a trick question. What do you want your business to look like in 5 years time? What do you want it to have done for you?
Mario Andretti was once asked for his most important tip for success in race car driving. And he said "Don't look at the wall. Your car goes where your eyes go."
So you have to have goals because they fix where you're looking! Then choose your next actions to start moving towards those goals.
Why you need more than goals:
Beyond goals, there are habits. Because goals are often called 'Lag measures'. You set goals, then there's this huge lag between setting them and achieving them. The activities that move you towards your goals are called 'lead measures'. It's like, "What things must I do consistently that will lead me towards achieving these goals?".
Because what happens to most of us is, habits take over and our best intentions just evaporate into the whirlwind of day to day urgency.
Take weight loss as an example. Goals with many would be written as "Lose 10kg by September 30th." Well for a start, when humans 'lose' things, they always try to get them back!! Goals should be positively written, like "I will be fit and lean and weigh 85kg by September 30th". Make sure its written down!
But hey, it's not going to just happen. Lead measures need to be things like "I will walk for 30 minutes every morning and evening". Now you know that if you don't do it, you risk not achieving your goal. Make it a habit, find good reasons to do it and get it done!
So many people say goals don't work. That's because they haven't worked out the part about believing in them. If you don't believe its possible, it will never help.
To grow is to change. To change is to think differently.
That's not easy! Especially when it involves entering uncharted waters, beyond your comfort zone.
Don't feel energetic about something? Successful people aren't run by how they feel. Act as if you're energetic about it. As a strategy for personal growth, this is extraordinarily powerful. It links with the 'believing'.
Acting enthusiastically about a lead measure to your goal will give you confidence in it. It works, but it's so simple you feel dumb when you first do it! Success never comes instantaneously. It comes from taking many small steps. A set of goals turns into a map someone can follow in order to grow. It's the doing that brings the success.
But anyway, people with clear, written goals accomplish tonnes more in a shorter period of time than people without them could ever dream of. This is, always has been, try everywhere under all circumstances.
So there you go! Now matter how far back you're shooting from, you can rightly expect to achieve that goal.
Write it down!