Tracking goals is an ongoing process, not a one time thing. This is the time when you are actively working on your goals and it is generally over some long period of time. During that time, its important that goals are not just forgotten. They need to be looked at on a regular basis. The more you think about your goals, the more you enhance the related beliefs and the more attention you will put to achieving these goals. I have some recommendations here for working towards your goals as well for tracking and monitoring them.
Working On Your Goals
The next important thing to do for working on your goals is pick the absolute simplest thing you can and make it the next thing you can work on. It should be something that you can do immediately (today or tomorrow). It might be as simple as looking up a contact name or finding some article or reference material, but that in itself is progress and a step towards your goal. Come up with a list of these simple things that will lead to progress towards your goal and write as many of them as you can think of. Making a habit of doing simple tasks towards your goal is very important and a great way to ensure that your focus will last without feeling overwhelmed by the work and that you have an impossible goal.
Make sure you keep tasks simple so you don’t get bogged down by any one long task and break them into pieces if you need to so you can always work on some small part. Keep a running list. Update it frequently so you don’t run out of things to work on. As mentioned above, you should focus on your goals on a regular basis and spend that time planning, reviewing and working on the tasks to help towards your achievement.
Some people find it helpful to use a goal buddy that they can share their plan and tasks list and hold them accountable to so that they are responsible to get things down not only for themselves, but also for the other person since they will be expecting it. Try this out to see if it works for you. Sometimes even just telling someone else and reporting to them on how its going is enough to keep you working with extra inspiration. A mentor here is perfect for helping to track and monitor your goals.
This may be daily, weekly or perhaps only monthly. The preference highly depends on each person and on the goals themselves. I recommend weekly, no matter what the goals are, since most people can remember tasks and items from about a week, but not much more.
Progress is Success!
Progress. The one and only thing that really matters for goal achievement. Continuous, steady progress will lead to accomplished goals. You will never get there without progress. This is why the small tasks work so well since you can easily remind yourself when you review your goals of the success and progress you are already having towards your goal if you are taking it on in small pieces.
Taking a simple action everyday or every week is a great way to have success in your whole goal setting process and it will definitely continue to inspire you to keep going strong with it. Keep that list of items going and keep them small enough that every time you review your goals, you have at least one thing to check off as being done.
Is Changing a Goal Cheating?
Next, its important to carefully consider your goal progress and be honest with where you are at. Its even a good idea to change your goals when you are falling behind. Its no use to beat yourself up for falling offtrack or getting behind on things, simply change your goal, reset, and starting making progress again. This is where most people fail who do set goals, they seem unwilling to change their goals, get farther and farther behind and eventually just give up. Don’t do that, just change your goal.
Adjusting a goal might mean changing the timebase of it, changing the goal itself to make it easier for you or even eliminating a goal altogether. Perhaps, just the way you measure a goal needs to be refined so you can tell when you’ve really accomplished it. Maybe your ideas and priorities have changed. After all, people’s minds and circumstances change all the time and therefore, so should their goals. If you’ve changed your beliefs about a goal, adjust it and make it real again. Remove some goals or add new ones. Its perfectly valid to adjust your goals constantly and actually, it will drastically help you to focus on the right goals that really do mean something, because those topics don’t just fade away; irrelevant and temporary ones definitely do. Is it cheating? No way, its part a proper goal setting process.
So, keep reviewing goals regularly, recognize progress towards your goal and feel free to change things to make them more appropriate.
Goal Setting Series
Prev: Goal Setting: Setting and Identifying
Next: Goal Setting: Completing and Closing