How smart is your heart?
When you think of a big goal or dream that you want to achieve, it’s a human thing to think of the obstacles that might come your way. The problem is far too often we allow these obstacles to become so big in our minds that they inhibit us from moving forward. This is when many people begin to accept mediocrity or abandon their dreams.
Don’t let this be you. Rather than creating larger-than-life barriers in your mind and dwelling on everything that will hold you back, envision yourself victorious like a high-achiever you admire. Picture yourself as the greatest at what you want to achieve. Visualize your next move as a win and when the wins come, celebrate.
What Will it Take?
What sacrifices will you make? How can you manage any obstacle and make it to your goal? The key is to make your positive vision stronger than any challenge.
If you can’t picture yourself achieving a goal, the chances are you won’t. The more clarity you get, the better it will work out. Think of your personal goals in life. Spend time every day picturing yourself achieving each at least once; the results are potentially amazing.
Let’s Look at Goal-Setting
Have you heard of S.M.A.R.T? This is a goal setting system that I know many people use but, wait! Did you know that it was never designed as a personal goal setting system back in the early 1980’s? George Duran proposed S.M.A.R.T in relation to employee goal setting to help managers monitor and motivate employee performance.
Yet today, many people use S.M.A.R.T to help with their personal goal setting. Some say it works, many say it doesn’t; but, what does it mean? Here’s an example found via a random Google search, “setting SMART goals” from Melanie Balke, Growth Strategist, BAMF Media .
“Reach 300,000 New Unique Site Visitors Per Month Within 90 Days
We use SMART goals for working with our clients daily. A great example is when clients try to drive new eyeballs to their website by increasing their website traffic. We would formulate the SMART goal for this objective the following way:
S – Specific: The goal defines both what needs to be attained and by when.
M – Measurable: The goal is measurable within Google Analytics.
A – Attainable: The goal is a 20% increase of their current site visits, which containing their additional budget ramp up and the three-month time frame is realistic while still being ambitious.
R – Relevant: The goal is to get new eyeballs to the site. We could falsely be measuring sessions or overall site visitors, but we would be measuring how many old visitors come back to the site like that as well. Therefore, we want to choose new unique site visitors to single out every new single visitor.
T – Time-bound: We set a period of three months to attain this goal.”
I don’t know what the results were, but it looks like a strong well-thought-out SMART goal that’s going to work. However, those who criticize, argue that SMART is a system designed for managers, not individuals.
What Are The Alternatives?
There is another system with the acronym H.E.A.R.T. I came across the system in a workshop offered by an amazing guy called Jim Kwik. His podcasts are entirely worth listening to. Kwik is an expert in speed-reading, memory improvement, and optimal brain performance. He is the CEO and Founder of Kwik Learning, a leader in accelerated learning with online students of all-ages and vocations in over 150 countries. Following a brain injury as a child, he developed severe learning difficulties but turned those around completely.
I’m a little confused about the origins of H.E.A.R.T, Jim Kwik talks about it and I came across it on another site that placed the ™ after H.E.A.R.T. Not sure what to make of that, plenty of people have written about it without reference.
HEART Instead of SMART
H – HEALTHY – Goals that support your greater well-being
E – ENDURING – Is your goal setup in such a way to give you grit and perseverance?
People think they should not have any problems. Failure is not the opposite of success.
A – ALLURING – Something that pulls you.
R – RELEVANT – Relating to your core values.
T – TRUTH – Your Truth, not someone else.
Creating goals that PULL you is the key with H.E.A.R.T. Here are a couple of examples.
- Provide experiences for clients or customers that improve their lives.
- Live a healthy and active life.
- Support and encourage people around me in ways that matter.
They do seem to provide some meaningful guidance while inviting us to be our best selves and, there’s no need for complicated yardsticks or spreadsheets to track progress because we will always know when we are living up to the H.E.A.R.T.
Does it Work?
Personally, I prefer to put S.M.A.R.T into my H.E.A.R.T. But wait, that’s the wrong way around so starting from the heart, let’s look at one of my goals from the heart that relates to another of my business projects that I’m passionate about.
- To offer information that will help Mountain Bikers improve their skills.
This is how I SMARTified that:
- S – Create specific content that will help Mountain Bikers improve their skills
- M – This is measured by a call to action asking readers to share their success
- A – I’ve trailed this specific goal and people have responded. I agree it works.
- R – It’s realistic. The Jaaxy Research Tool informs me that a lot of people are searching for ways to improve their skills.
- T – The Time for this is new comments will follow every article.
I keep a SMART / HEART journal for this because feedback and reflection matter to my continued development and here’s where we get back to visualization.
Before setting the goal, I build a detailed picture of what I will do once the goal is reached. How amazing does it feel? How will this change the course of my business? The intricate details boost the likelihood of the big picture. I don’t spend hours although it has become a constructive habit of putting together a positive vision into every day thinking. I visualize succeeding and achieving every goal and completing every task and, I always celebrate with an air punch, big grin, coffee . . .
The Bottom Line
If you can’t picture yourself in your own mind being extremely successful, dominating your market, running a phenomenal business or whatever it is you aim to achieve, the chances are limited. Put yourself in the picture.
I would love to know what you think. Please leave your comments and questions below. Your thoughts will help me measure the success of this post and you may be helping other people too.
Here’s to Your Success
2 thoughts on “Visualization Techniques for Goal Setting”
I recently started making small short term goals and long term goals and every day I wake up I find myself striving to complete those goals. Thanks for the great read.
Hi Lori, You might like to try this exercise too. Start by thinking of an ultimate goal you want to achieve in say 12 months. Write it down and track back to today. What steps will you have taken to reach that goal? Now you have a list of smaller steps to take to reach the big one 🙂 Hope this helps, Steve