You’ve been working so darn hard and still you can’t achieve your goals. Maybe it’s time to take a good hard look at how you set goals in the first place. We’ve all heard the advice to set realistic goals and then do our best work to achieve them. The tricky term here is realistic. All too often that is interpreted to mean doable or uncomplicated; in other words, do what you know you’re capable of and success follows. Perhaps it’s time for a new approach.
It may seem counterintuitive, but as far back as the late 1960’s, Dr. Edwin Locke’s research showed that setting difficult goals and objectives was directly related to high performance. His “SMART” goals are widely known today, but less well-known is the concept of “HARD” (heartfelt, animated, required and difficult) goals.
So, where do you begin? At the beginning, of course!
H is for Heartfelt, which is all about building a strong emotional connection with your goals. After all, if you don’t deeply care about what success you’ll gain from achieving your goals, what will motivate you to achieve them in the first place? Choose goals that promise more value than anything else you can imagine and you’ll being moving mountains in no time.
A is for Animated, and this means visualizing your goal as already accomplished. Seeing a goal in your mind’s eye as a done deal is what will put you in the league of great achievers.
R is for Required, so begin convincing yourself that success is not an option but a necessity. Make your hard goal attractive by believing you will be far better off having achieved it.
D is for Difficult and means stepping outside your normal goal-setting comfort zone and choosing something at least 20% more difficult for you to do. You’ll find your brain is more engaged and you’ll discover untapped talents you never knew you had.
None of this is to suggest you set goals so difficult and unattainable that you lose all hope or confidence in reaching them. It simply means we do ourselves no favor when we choose an easier path that does not lead to greater strengths or desired success. If you’re looking to consistently achieve success in life and work, start setting more difficult goals. This new approach will take some effort, but the results will convince you the endeavor is worth it.
As I always say “What is easy to do is easy not to do!”
If you would like some assistance in setting up your hard goals, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org