How to Identify Goals & Objectives


Without goals and objectives, some people may feel like they are not in full control of their lives. Identifying and developing goals and objectives gives people something to strive for, and offers them a greater sense of purpose in life. In general, this is a smart way to get what you want out of life. After all, you may not achieve your goals, but if you don't strive for anything, you won't achieve anything.

  • Learn the difference between goals and objectives. A goal is broad, long-term result of what you want. For example, if you want to own your own home in five years, then that's your goal. Objectives are the steps you take to get there.

  • Decide what your goals are. This can be tricky, and everyone discovers their personal goals differently. It helps to have some self-awareness, and know what you enjoy and excel at. Almost everyone has a desire of some sort. If you truly cannot figure it out, ask others for their opinion. If you're deciding on a career, think about what you do well, or ask people what they think you'd be good at. Other people offer a different perspective that can sometimes be more accurate than an individual's self-perception.

  • Make sure your goals are specific. A goal that simply states you want to be financially secure isn't specific enough. Figure out how much money it would take to make you financially secure, and make that your goal.

  • Choose goals that are reasonably within your control. There will always be outside influence when achieving a goal, but if yours is as unlikely as single-handedly ending all war, you will certainly fail.

  • Build your objectives based on your main goal. This is usually the easiest part, because objectives naturally stem from goals. Back to the financial security example, once you've determined a specific amount of money to earn, you can set objectives of how much you need to earn per week to achieve your main goal. Then, you can even make other objectives, such as cutting back on certain expenses to save money, which also contributes to your goal.

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