I love being happy so I like to set myself some goals at the beginning of each year and keep updating them as the year progresses.
Not all my goals are serious, work related, financial or hard work (although a few of them are). Some of them are things like “be as happy as humanly possible”, “play guitar better than Gumby” and “love big.”
So why do goals make you happy?
Firstly, goals give us a sense of meaning. And meaning is one of the Five Fundamentals to a Happy Life. Do you know anyone who has no or few goals? I do! I used to date a no-goal guy a lifetime ago. He was so dissatisfied, unmotivated, and terribly, terribly unhappy. Finally he found something that gave him something to strive for and he became a different person. Through having goals he had a sense of purpose. And a sense of meaning. And it spilled over into every part of his life.
Secondly, goals give our self-esteem a boost. When we accomplish little parts of our goals along the way we get to feel competent and capable. We get to feel proud of ourselves. (That’s if our Inner Critic hasn’t got the best of us. If you have problems with your Inner Critic download my free e-book “10 Ways to Stop Your Inner Critic Killing Your Confidence” at www.healgrowtransform.com.au).
Thirdly, goals add structure and control to our lives. If you’re anything like me, the word ‘structure’ strikes fear in your heart. But structure helps us feel more in control of our lives. When we have too much freedom it actually creates anxiety. And I wouldn’t want to add anxiety to my life if I could avoid it.
Finally, the process of setting goals helps us get clear on what is important to us. It helps us get clear on what our values are. Which means we get clearer on who we are. The more we know who we are, the happier we are.
In addition to goals making us happier, setting and writing (or making visual goals as in Vision Boards) actually increases our chances of being successful. There was a study done with Harvard graduates where they were followed from when they were at University to 20 years later. The ones who wrote their goals down had an income (on average) 10 x more than the ones who didn’t write them down. 10 x more!!!!! That’s a LOT more income.
In the weeks to come I’m going to give you all the nitty gritty on setting goals and how to make them work best for you so make sure you keep reading.
It might also be a good idea to start thinking about what your goals are. And maybe even write them down OR start collecting images (Vision Board style) that represent your goals.