The High-Achiever's 8-Step Guide to Setting Crystal Clear Goals


Did it happen to you yet?  Did the panic-thought jump into your brain confronting you with reality…  that you have not set not one dang goal for 2023?

I’m not here to judge.  But I am here to nudge.  (…see what I did there????  😊 ) 

Let me encourage you to think deeply about what you’d like to do this year. It’s time to leave the pie in the sky goals behind and confidently walk forward into this new year with a crystal clear vision.

Grab a cup of your fav tea, or a glass of vino and find a comfortable sitting position.  Use these eight tips to think through your largest goals.

Step 1: Know Your Why

Your goals become more powerful the second you attach a significant meaning to them. Your "why" is the reason you want to accomplish a goal.

Anyone can set a goal to lose weight, pay off debt or make more money, but what does that change mean for you in your life? If you can take a step back from the actual goal and think about how your life will be impacted by this action, you'll be able create more powerful goals. 

For example: 

Your Goal: I want to pay off my student loan debt.
Better Goal: I want to pay off my student loan debt because: 

  1. I will have more disposable income.

  2. I can save more for retirement.

  3. I can be a better role model for my child.

  4. I can focus on investing and creating a better financial portfolio.

Having a goal is great, but understanding why you want to accomplish that goal is even better. If you can pinpoint a few good reasons or great side effects of accomplishing this goal, then these reasons will help you continue to commit to the goal when times get rough. 


Step 2: Quantify it

Quantifying your goals means to attach a number to them. This means breaking down how much weight you want to lose, how much debt you have to pay off or how many times you want to get deep tissue massages. (Just me?)

For example:

Your Goal: I want to pay off my student loan debt. 
Better Goal: I am going to pay off $32K in student loan debt. 

The benefit of quantifying your goals is that you can clearly and easily articulate exactly how much you have to go on your goals. 


Step 3: Add in a due date

Do you remember being in high school and the teacher tells you you have a paper due at the end of the month, but you'll wait until three days before it's due to start researching and writing it? Due dates add a sense of urgency. It can give you the kick in the pants that you need to get moving on the goal. 

Your Goal: I am going to pay off $32K in student loan debt.
Better Goal: I am going to pay off 32K in student loan debt by December 31st

Always set a concrete date for when you want that goal to be completed. Otherwise, you might be reaching towards the same goal every single year because you did not give yourself a definitive date to get it done. Your goal for the year becomes a "someday" goal.


Step 4: Add in the how

Your "how" is your action plan. Breaking your big goals into the simpler goals it'll take to accomplish the goal, you make the goal more tangible. You give yourself an opportunity to mentally break down what it will take to get there. 

Your Goal: I am going to pay off $32K in student loan debt.
Better Goal: I am going to pay off $32K in student loan debt by December 31st by lowering my living expenses by 25%, sticking to a strict "fun money" budget and creating online products.

This step is one of my favorites because it forces you start talking in terms of action. 


Step 5: Think about the frequency

Every week on Sunday, I head down to a coffee shop and get to work. I can sit there anywhere from 4-6 hours (like a legit 9-to-5) and that is the day that I'm most productive. When I first started doing this, I would pull myself out of bed, shower and have breakfast then (after a half hour of convincing myself that this was good for me) I'd head to the coffee shop. After weeks of doing this every Sunday, no matter where I am or how I feel that day, my body pulls me into a coffee shop to work. 

Adding in the frequency that you will perform an action that helps you reach your goals (whether it's daily, weekly or monthly) will help you develop a habit over time. 

For example:

Your Goal: I'm going to work out more. 
Better Goal: I'm going to work out three days a week. 
Best Goal: I'm going to work out on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

Getting super clear on when you will work on your goals - and sticking to it over time - will increase your ability to accomplish your goals because over time you'll develop habits.


Step 6: Make Your Goal Present On Your Schedule

Chris Hart once said

"Show me your calendar and I'll show you your priorities."

It basically means that we all make time for the things that we want to do and the things that we value in our lives. If you want to be a high achiever, you simply have to make your goal one of these priorities. 

That starts with giving your goals a definitive time on your calendar. 

For example:  

Goal: I'm going to work out on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. 
Better Goal: I'm going to work out on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays after work.

When you have time slotted for your goal and nothing else can take that time, you become unstoppable.  


Step 7: Speak as if it's already done

Your brain, while incredibly complex, is also pretty easy to trick. That's why we do vision boards annually and look at them daily - the more your brain sees something, the more it believes it's already done. The same thing goes for what you say. 

Changing your goals from something you will do in the future to something you're currently doing tells your brain that you are committed to doing this NOW - it's not something you're putting off to a later date. 

For example:

Your Goal: I'm going to work out on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays after work. 
Better goal: I work out every Monday, Wednesday and Friday after work.


Step 8: Don’t give up

Life will sometimes throw us curve balls.  Whatever happens, try not to ever give up on achieving the goals that are most important to you.  It is always better to revise a goal to give yourself more time to finish it, rather than give up on the goal altogether.


Bonus: FOCUS on one goal at a time

My last piece of advice is to focus on one large goal at a time. If you're trying to do five things at once, you're putting 20% of your energy into 5 different things. While you might be incredibly busy, you may have nothing to show for it at the end of the day. Choose one goal that will make a huge difference in your life - and once that goal is completed - move on to the next one. 

Happy Goal-Crushing!


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Cyrene is a fun and accomplished workshop facilitator, learning and development guru and Human Resources professional. Being at the helm of Thrive Lounge has been a long-time dream. Through vision board workshops she plans to accomplish two-way learning. Sharing her vast years of knowledge to motivate and encourage others; while simultaneously getting the reward of great energy, ideas and questions to ponder back from each group. A super win-win. Please join our Thrive Lounge community so you too can benefit!

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