In this lesson (lesson 2), we are going to talk about setting goals, but first, I want us to think about a couple things. When was the last time you thought about your childhood? College years? Adult life? How did you get from that cute little baby to where you are today?
For me, I grew up in a town of fewer than 1,000 people in South Dakota. You know, a typical small town where most everything centered around school events…and farming. As I grew up and matured into high school, I became involved in many extracurricular activities and got good grades.
I then was accepted into a very highly rated University and obtained my Bachelor's of Architecture and Masters of Social Work. Once I graduated, I ended up falling in love with a beautiful woman from South Africa and decided to move there for a few months to be with her and propose before coming back to the US where I made her my wife.
With all of that in mind, how was I able to accomplish all of those things? I'm only 26, but I've managed to earn two degrees, travel to 10 different countries, and get hitched to a beautiful (in every way) woman… The answer is I'm good at setting goals! I set goals that are achievable but still force me to push myself to reach them.
Without setting goals to be accepted into a highly ranked University, go to grad school, travel the world, etc. I would never have accomplished any of the things I have mentioned.
The same goes for our online business. In my opinion, the goals I have set for my business have really helped me get to where I am today and where I will be in the future. I haven't met them all, but they have pushed me to work hard and keep growing my website.
I think setting good goals will do a few very important things as you move forward with your very own online business.
1. …keep you on track
- Trust me, it will be a constant battle to not get completely distracted and off track as you research and learn more and more. I have so many ideas I would love to pursue, but I know if I went after them all I wouldn't ever actually accomplish anything. My goals help to keep my mind in the right place and my efforts moving in the right direction.
2. …keep you moving forward
- So often in this business it is ridiculously easy to get stuck, or not get anything done at all because we're either overwhelmed or looking for perfection. By this I mean we keep working on the same thing until it's perfect, instead of moving forward. Having goals will help to get you past those points and on to the next things.
3. …give you a sense of accomplishment
- There is no better feeling of accomplishment than checking off one of your goals, especially if it was a more difficult one. Knowing this satisfaction awaits will push you to achieve all your goals.
4. …show how far you've come
- I'm always amazed when I go back and look at the goals I set in my first few months of building this business compared to the ones I'm setting now. I've come so far and learned so much. The goals I'm accomplishing now are so much more advanced than even six months ago. Trust me, if you set goals and work hard, the goals you'll be setting six months from now will be so much bigger and better than you ever imagined possible.
Now that we have a better understanding of the importance of setting goals, we need to actually set them. But first, I want to recap the vision you created in the last lesson:
How did writing your vision down go for you? Was it challenging? Were you able to put your vision into words?
Your vision is important because it will help us frame our goals. In essence, we are going to narrow down your vision into simplified, achievable goals. Once we have done this, you will have a plan of action and a destination to aim for.
We are going to set both short and long-term goals. Short-term goals are what you'd like to achieve in the next week or two or even within the next couple months. Long-term goals are based on periods at least two months in the future.
I am a firm believer that when you set goals, most of them should be goals you know you can reach if you are dedicated and put in the effort. It's alright to have one or two at a time that would take a miracle to achieve, but not too many.
Now, we're going to start by setting 5 goals together (you can always do more if you'd like on your own.) We will have four short-term and one long-term goal. You can write them down in the comments on this lesson's discussion page here:
Goal 2: In One Week (short term)
Ex: get my first website up and running
Ex: publish one new blog post/product review
Goal 3: In One Month (short term)
Ex: publish 5 new blog posts/product reviews
Ex: create a Facebook business page for my new online business
Goal 4: In Two Months (short term)
Ex: have a total of 15 blog posts/product reviews
Ex: purchase and install a premium theme on my website
Goal 5: In six months (long term)
Ex: have made 5 sales total
Ex: be making $100/month
Ex: publish a total of 50 blog posts/product reviews
Be sure to make these goals challenging but achievable. Please record them in the comments on this page so you can get feedback and have a bit of accountability. Also, feel free to comment on other people's goals as well.
I'll see you in the next lesson!
Dustin “Kirby” Garness