We talk a lot about setting goals in business — revenue goals, leads generated, sales goals, profit goals. But I don’t see a lot of people talk about how to go about setting those goals.
How do you know if a goal is to small or too big? Is there even such a thing?
For me, goal setting is a holistic process. It takes into account all the different aspects of my life including the deep reasons behind my ambitions, and I think that’s something that’s missing from a lot of advice around goal setting.
To get started, click here to download my 12 Months From Now vision worksheet, which will act as your guide to envisioning your best year ever — from all the angles.
Setting the vision
I like to set goals by starting with my big vision. Business goals are as much about lifestyle design as they are about hard numbers and metrics, and you must take that into account before you can set reasonable, achievable goals.
For example, your “business” goal might be to double your revenue in the next 12 months — but if you don’t also plan what your lifestyle will look like, you might find yourself working until midnight every night and hustling on weekends (which usually isn’t on anyone’s vision board!)
If, on the other hand, your goal is to double your revenue while only working 20 hours a week, the steps you will take to achieve that goal are going to look very different.
Your vision should be totally limitless. While it may not be reasonable or achievable to reach your ultimate vision in the next 12 months, feel free to dream as big as you like. That helps you set your course in the right direction, even if it takes more than 12 months to reach the destination.
Dig into the why
Once you’ve created a beautiful vision for yourself (you ultimate big vision as well as your vision for the next 12 months) it’s important to go a little deeper and ask yourself why.
Why do you want to double your revenue? Why do you want to be location independent? Why do you want to cut your hours back to 20 per week? Why do you want to give yourself a raise?
This isn’t the moment to question your desires — it’s perfectly valid to want anything you want! But rather, this is the moment to examine your motivations.
When you have a strong motivation attached to a goal, you’re much more likely to achieve it. It’s fine to say that you want to earn more money, but when you discover that you want to earn more money so that you can afford to spend more time with your family, contribute to your favorite charity, or travel the world, that goal becomes much more real and tangible.
What will your vision allow you to do?
Finally, we start to look at what achieving these goals will actually allow you to do. This is a place to get very specific. So if your motivation was to spend more time with your family, dig a little deeper and ask yourself what that looks like: date nights with your partner? Attending every school play or game your children participate in? Family dinner every night?
This is also where you can get down to brass tacks to help you define those goals a little more. If you want to travel, for example, where do you want to go? For how long? How much will it cost? Knowing those details will help you create more inspiring, actionable goals.
Think too about how you will feel when you achieve these goals. Do you want to feel free? Rich? Generous? Expansive? Creative? There’s no right or wrong answer here — but having an answer is an important part of discovering which goals are really important to you, and which may feel stale in a matter of weeks.
Take time to craft your vision
No matter where you’re at in your business, now is the perfect time to sit down and do some visioning around where you want to be in the next 12 months.
I recommend blocking out an hour in your schedule, getting your favorite beverage, and maybe even starting out with a few minutes of meditation to clear your head. This short meditation asks you to imagine your future self and see what wisdom she has for you today.
Then get out your 12 Months From Now vision worksheet and start filling in the boxes. Don’t judge yourself during this process! Let the inspirations flow, and believe me: the goals and actions you need to take will become clear.