Goal setting has been an established component in attempting to enhance one’s personal and professional life, as well as a catalyst for human motivation. It has also provided guidance for organizational strategy and individual achievement. Unfortunately, the process of goal setting has become unnecessarily complex and over analyzed for individuals and organizations to utilize on a daily basis.

Allow me to simplify this individual goal setting process for you. Goal is defined as “the object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result.” So the first question to you is: “What does it mean to have a goal?” Second, “Do you have any goals in your life?”

To have a goal means you have direction for the path your future will take. To determine whether you have any direction for your life, here is a practical, undemanding, yet powerful question: When you woke up this morning, did you have something to look forward to?

If you did, then you have goals and direction. If you did not, then you need to reconsider what you’re doing.

If you have more than one goal, which ones are most important? Rank your goals in order of importance. If you are able to execute that task successfully, then you have just established and prioritized your goals, and you are on a path of personal accomplishment.

Know Your Purpose

Having something to look forward to every day provides the energy to contribute positively to yourself and those around you, and helps to keep your attitude positive. It also validates that you as a human being matter, and that you have a purpose for existing. Without a sense of purpose, the excuse door opens, resulting in a loss of motivation, discouragement, frustration, and even depression. After all, how could you possibly be motivated if you have nothing you want to accomplish? Look at the number of individuals who emotionally and physically deteriorate when, in their own minds, they feel there is nothing to look forward to—they believe they no longer have purpose.

The ability for all of us to feel we are contributing in some way to the world around us can make a substantial difference in our attitude and our daily emotional and physical well-being. Every day I personally make a point to recognize, acknowledge, and work toward the areas of my life that I look forward to. For example, these goals might include my next speaking engagement, workout, board meeting, lunch with friends, vacation, visiting my children, or searching for something new to experience to broaden my mind or challenge my body. There is so much life can offer if you have the confidence, sense of purpose, and proper attitude to take a chance on your future and discover your full potential.

Create Your Future

Returning to those fundamental core values that reflect who you are will provide you the fortitude to manage those goals and provide you with an outlook on life that is optimistic and full of possibilities. Realize that having something to look forward to is essential to create yourself and your future. How you coordinate your efforts to accomplish those goals rests individually on you.

At this moment, my goal for you is that you wake up tomorrow morning with something to look forward to. Enjoy the day because you matter, have a purpose, and have the potential to positively impact those around you every day. Your attitude is the catalyst to begin that enjoyment.

Author's Bio: 

Jay Rifenbary is a professional speaker, trainer, and consultant who provides expertise in the areas of personal and professional development, leadership, and communications. He is president of Rifenbary Training & Development and the author of two books, "True To Your Core - Common Sense Values for Living Life to Its Fullest" and “No Excuse! – Incorporating Core Values, Accountability and Balance into Your Life and Career." Visit www.rifenbary.com for more information.