Awhile ago, I wrote about the necessity of goal setting and my relative distaste for it. I got a few questions asking me if I really don’t goal set and what exactly is it that I don’t like.
Yes, I goal set. I have recently been working on a business class that helps me figure out what I am doing with the logistical side of Performance Strength & Conditioning. Part of the process is writing 1, 3 and 5 year goals. Of course, looking that far out is nearly impossible to do, but it is a good experience thinking and dreaming about what could be. Once you goal set though, once you have picked the thing that you want, you instantly become accountable towards working to that goal. I do not mind that part.
I write goals for my training year. For the calendar year 2010-11, I achieved maybe 2 out of 20. I set goals really high and I didn’t get very many. However, I made really good progress towards many of them and I know that I will achieve them soon. And with others that seem so far off, I know I need help. Some of it is finding the right coach to help me with the technical movements of an exercise. Some of it is finding the right training partners and environment to push myself past barriers I have erected. And some of it is simply I want to do some things that are really hard to do.
The part of goal setting that drives me nuts is the failure to reach something I know I can. Setting lofty goals and missing is ok, but reasonable ones that are missed just annoys me. I know that I am capable and should reach these goals, but haven’t and it makes me feel terrible. Then every once in a while something happens that reminds me of why you set goals and why failure is not a worry.
The same friend I spoke about in the last post, the one who had never competed in anything, actually did and actually reached his goal. He worked really hard and made an almost 25% improvement on his score to reach his goal. I was and am very proud of him. He listened to coaching, stuck with his exercise and diet plan, and he got what he wanted. For as happy as he should be, he is not done however. There are other goals and other challenges to be met.
Part of being a trainer and a coach of athletes is helping them find those goals that really matter and then showing them the path to get where they want to go. Honestly, my job is mostly about helping my clients identify goals and then find strategies to get there. So what do you want to do today and who can help you get there? What are you going to improve 25% to make a huge difference in your life?