Welcome to Goals Are Cool!

Hi, my name is Blake, and I’m here to help you achieve goals in both life & business. When you think about it, we all achieve “goals”. Sometimes the goal is planned from the beginning, and sometimes it’s not. When we take the time to plan our path we don’t just stumble upon success, we achieve it with a clear vision and purpose.

Misinformation About Goals

There’s been a LOT of misinformation about goals. In the not so distant past, multiple people made reference to studies from Yale/Harvard that were later determined to be an urban myth.

For example, Forbes published a web article titled “How To Set Goals (And Why You Should Write Them Down)” by Annabel Acton.

“There’s some impressive science to back up goal setting. And yet it’s something we’re never taught or encouraged to do. But the statistics don’t lie, and make a strong argument for getting good at this skill; and making a habit of it. A Harvard Business Study found that the 3% of graduates from their MBA who had their goals written down, ended up earning ten times as much as the other 97% put together, just ten years after graduation.”

(Source: “How To Set Goals (And Why You Should Write Them Down)” Forbes. November 3, 2017 https://www.forbes.com/sites/annabelacton/2017/11/03/how-to-set-goals-and-why-you-should-do-it/ )

It’s important to note that some of the articles which referenced the Yale/Harvard studies to be true without original source information have been updated. Some of those articles removed the references completely while others acknowledged the mistake and provided an update.

Lawrence Tabak debunked the Yale study in a Fast Company article back in 1996.

Now let’s look at research that was actually conducted by Gail Matthews, Ph.D., Dominican University of California.

Dominican University of California Study

Along with others, Dr. Matthews believed the Yale/Harvard study to be “urban myth”. Her research documented the results of 149 participants segmented into 5 groups with the following conclusions:

  1. “The positive effect of accountability was supported: those who sent weekly progress reports to their friend accomplished significantly more than those who had unwritten goals, wrote their goals, formulated action commitments or sent those action commitments to a friend.
  2. There was support for the role of public commitment: those who sent their commitments to a friend accomplished significantly more than those who wrote action commitments or did not write their goals.
  3. The positive effect of written goals was supported: Those who wrote their goals accomplished significantly more than those who did not write their goals.

With the proliferation of business and personal coaching and the often anecdotal reports of coaching success it is important that this growing profession be founded on sound scientific research.

  • This study provides empirical evidence for the effectiveness of three coaching tools: accountability, commitment and writing down one’s goals.
  • There now is a study demonstrating that writing one’s goal enhances goal achievement. However, it was not done at Harvard or Yale, but at Dominican University.”

(Source: Goals Research Summary (PDF here: Gail Mathews Goal Study Dominican University), by Gail Matthews, Ph.D., Dominican University of California

5 Steps To Achieve Your Goals

This information is based on my experience achieving goals in both life & business.

Step #1: Identify what you want

Create an ultimate vision and purpose for your life, and for different areas of your life. Think about different categories that may apply to you such as physical health, intellect, finance, travel, career/business, relationships, personal development, and spirituality.

TIP #1: Inspired by visuals? Try this!

EXAMPLE: If you want to make more money the outcome may include buying a new car. The next time you’re online, sign up for a free Pinterest account and start pinning images of cars that you would like to own. You can also do this offline with vision boards using images that you collect from various sources.

Step #2: Set your goals

Use proven goal setting criteria to set short-term, intermediate, and long-term goals. Setting goals that align with your ultimate vision and purpose will bring more meaning and direction to your goal setting efforts.

EXAMPLE: I will launch a WordPress website for my consulting business by completing the 7 steps identified in my strategic action steps template. This will allow me to increase my business presence online and reach more potential customers by October 25, 2018.

TIP #1: Write your goals down

Sometimes it’s useful to experiment with the way your goals are written. For example, I like to start my goal statements with “I will” + a verb. However, some people do it differently. Here are some examples:

  • To + a verb
  • By + date of achievement
  • Turn what you want into a sentence or positive affirmation and say it as if it’s already happened (I feel happy and fulfilled…)
  • Use a pen and paper (not your computer) and write your goal until it becomes ingrained in your mind.

TIP #1: Review your goals on a regular basis

Keep your goals visible and review them regularly.

  • Put sticky notes with your written goals on the bathroom mirror. Read them every morning when you wake up and before you go to bed at night.
  • Write your goals on an index card and carry it in your pocket.

Step #3: Create your plan

Create a well-organized and strategic plan tailored to you and the goal you want to achieve. Strive to be more proactive vs. reactive, make better decisions, and create a clear path to success.

TIP #1: Include a living document

This step-by-step plan should include a living document that has specific information that increases your chance of success and assists you throughout the entire process.

TIP #1: Find proven plans

To find proven plans, seek out people who’ve already achieved the same goal or something similar. You might also consider working with a coach or consultant.

Step #4: Take action

You can’t achieve the goal if you don’t take action. Learn how to manage your time effectively, be more proactive vs. reactive, make better decisions and use the sources of motivation outlined in your plan. You must take purpose/passion driven action to achieve your goals like a boss.

Some things that have helped me include quotes, goal reviews, motivational videos, music, and networking with people who are achieving their goals. Surround yourself with people you want to be like.

STOP making excuses and get started today!

TIP #1: Visualize success

Imagine you’ve already achieved the goal. See yourself in that position and enjoy the feeling of success.

TIP #2: Celebrate your success

Reward yourself and celebrate success. It doesn’t matter how big or small the success, this will help build your confidence and motivate you to move forward.

At times, I’ve incorporated penalties for not hitting certain milestones. If used properly, this can also help motivate you towards achievement. However, be careful as you don’t want to de-motivate yourself.

Step #5: Don't give up

At some point, things will get difficult, and you might want to give up. Don’t give up just because things get hard! It’s ok to make adjustments and be flexible along the way. 

TIP #1: Get the RIGHT support

Consider working with an accountability partner, coach or mentor depending on your unique situation. You might also consider mastermind groups and courses. It’s important to have mutual trust and respect.

TIP #2: Believe in yourself

Think about the goals you’ve already achieved in your life. The only person standing between you and your goal is you.

TIP #3: Think positive

It’s important to avoid using negative language and always think positive.

What Next?

1.) Check out My Cool Goals List

Over the years I’ve kept a running list of goals that I refer to on a regular basis. I call it “My Cool Goals List” and it’s helped get me through some pretty challenging times. Click the button below and check out My Cool Goals List.

2.) Read the blog

You’ll find all of our published posts on The Goals Are Cool Blog. Posts include podcast episodes, interviews, company updates and more all designed to help you achieve goals in both life & business. Click the button below and check out The Goals Are Cool Blog.

3.) Listen to the podcast

The Goals Are Cool Podcast with Blake Lea is a weekly show that motivates, inspires, and helps prepare you to take action and achieve your goals in both life & business. You can expect to receive expert advice, strategies, and interviews with incredible goal achievers, entrepreneurs, and all-around passion pursuers. Join us as we explore how to transform ideas into achievable goals that then leads to a Triumph (taking the success of achievement to the next level of personal greatness).
Enjoy the show? Help us spread the message by subscribing to the show in iTunes and leaving a 5-star rating & review. It helps! Click the button below to visit iTunes now!
Thanks in advance for your interest and support!

4.) Follow @goalsarecool on Twitter

Twitter is the best place to find us on social media. Feel free to tweet @goalsarecool and follow for all the latest. 

"There's been a LOT of misinformation about goals!"

5.) Join The Goals Are Cool Community!

The Goals Are Cool Community is a supportive training and networking community designed to help people build a thriving online business and achieve their goals. Click the link below to create a free account and get started today!