The Power of Writing Down Your Goals

I’ve never been the type to keep a calendar. I’ve always just thought of what I needed to do for the day in my head and by the end of the night, I’d lay in bed thinking, “Damn, I was supposed to do ___ today.” Send me to the grocery store without a list, and I can guarantee I would return without an item (probably the main item I went to the store for in the first place).

I admired people who just always seemed to have it. You know, that thing where they seem to constantly be doing something. To me that said, “I have direction.” I’d often ask some of them what their secret was. How do you stay so focused? The majority would tell me, “Write down your goals.” I’d look at them with my skeptical face like, “Seriously? That’s it?”

I gave it my first effort. I wrote in my calendar that comes with my phone what I wanted to accomplish the next day. Just simple things like: Hit the gym, write some of my memoir, laundry, etc. The next day came and I did none of those things.

What happened?

Well, I wrote down my intentions, but I didn’t have the habit to check the calendar that I wrote in. So, I stopped writing in my calendar before I really started. After some time, and meeting more people that I deem successful, and they too tell me, “Write down your goals.” Either there is something to this, or they are all in some sort of club that knows to say this to those at the door, begging to get in.

Attempt 2: I wrote my goals (short term) in my calendar, but this time, I set an alarm in my phone to go off at breakfast, lunch, and dinner time with the reminder, “CHECK YOUR CALENDAR!!!”

I had my first success. I did in fact check my calendar, and I began to get more done than before. I’ve since grown my habit a little more so that I no longer need the alarms to remind me because I naturally check my phone. However, the calendar was great for important upcoming events, and for the upcoming week. However, it wasn’t the best thing for me as far as long term goals go. Although, my short goals are the steps required to achieve the long term, but sometimes it’s nice to remind yourself why you’re doing this. I needed more.

I found a spot on my wall in my bedroom that I know that I look at everyday. The wall that I see each time I get out of bed was guaranteed to cross my vision. I wrote, nice and big, and in plan, neat print, “GOALS.”

This way, the first thing that I see in the morning is my dreams. My phone keeps the everyday process to achieving my goals. This way, whenever I feel lost or unguided, I can just look at my goals and remember why I do what I do. I’m not some super successful writer, and there are many reasons for that, mostly self-sabotage, but the biggest accomplishment that I’ve achieved since writing my goals down is bringing my GPA in college up from a 2.8 to a 3.8, graduating with my Bachelor’s degree Magna Cum Laude, and if everything goes as I plan, in less than 4 months I will have my master’s degree, also Magna Cum Laude. If you have ever known me at any point during my education, that’s a huge accomplishment. I attribute it all to just writing down under my goals, “Bring GPA up to at least a 3.5” and in my daily calendar I’d set reminders like, “11am-12 read for school” or “work on paper” etc.

Now, my new goal reads, “Get published” and my daily goals include writing in this blog.




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