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Time Management

What is a Goal?

A goal represents our intention to achieve or change something significant in our lives.

For example, you might set a goal to

  • Break a bad habit: "I'll limit my social media and gaming activities!"
  • Start a useful habit: "I'll start exercising more so I have more energy!"
  • Achieve more in an area of your life: "I'll graduate and land my dream job!"

At this stage, it's also important to ask yourself why your goal matters to you. What's important about achieving this goal right now? What makes you want it? What would your life be like if you achieved this goal?

While identifying goals is a key step in managing your time, it's important to remember that choosing a goal is only the first (and often the easiest) step. Having a goal doesn't mean you will automatically achieve it—you need to make a plan.

What is Goal Setting?

Goal setting is a purposeful and explicit process that involves creating an action plan to motivate, organize, and guide you toward achieving your goal .

Your plan should also include a benchmark or a standard for measuring whether you are succeeding with your goal or whether you need to make changes to your plan. Creating a plan and tracking your progress is what keeps you accountable to achieving your goal.

For example, if you wanted to start exercising to gain more energy, you might start by asking yourself:

  • How will I know if I'm exercising enough?
  • How often and how long do I want to exercise?
  • What type of exercise will make me feel more energized?
  • What days and times can I add more exercise to my schedule?

So, how do you transform your goal into an action plan you can measure? Check out the next section on SMART Goals to get started!