Answering These 6 Questions Will Turn Wishes into Attainable Goals

. at . 2 comments


Everyone has dreams, wishes, and wants. The tricky part is putting those dreams, wishes and wants into goal format. The even trickier part is following up enough on them to see fulfillment.

To start off with . . .

  1. Limit the number of goals to work on at one time. One or two goals work best.
  2. Write down your goal using specific words describing the who, what, when, where, why, and how. 

The Who – If a goal is not done for you, it will probably not be achieved. Getting good grades just for your parents’ sake or losing weight to satisfy your partner will not be as effective as if you did these two activities for your own benefit and satisfaction.

The What – Choose words that create a vivid mental image and touch as many of the senses as possible. Be specific. Don’t say, “I want to have a better relationship with my child.

Instead write,“I want to eat dinner at Applebees with my adult son once a week, talk to him on the phone for 15 minutes every Sunday night at 7,  and we’ll do something fun together once a quarter.

The WhenCreate a timeline. Write in the steps necessary to achieve the goal. Make each step ridiculously easy to accomplish. So what if you only practice Spanish or the flute 10 minutes a day? It’s 10 minutes more than you used to do and you have the option of doing more. Ten minutes each day for a week is 70 minutes and for a month it adds up to 300 minutes or five hours.

Also when writing up your steps, make it easy to carry out each part by having the materials handy. 

  • Keep your art supplies out and ready for your daily/weekly painting goals. 
  • Keep a supply of stamps, stationary, and cards with your address book in an accessible location to take advantage of odd moments of time to keep in touch with family and friends.

The WhereWhere will you achieve your goal; again be specific.

  • “I will go to the gym after work Monday, Wednesday and Friday.” 
  • “I will go to the River every Tuesday at 10 am to practice nature photography.” 
  • “I will sit in my brown chair in the study to have my morning Quiet Time after the kids leave for school.”

The WhyWhat will be the result of your achievement? Goals that have positive effects on self and others are noble ones and are easier to sustain than ones done solely for your pleasure.

Next time, I’ll share a dozen ways to keep your motivation high.

Your Turn . . . What dreams, wishes and wants can you turn into goals?

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Entry filed under: Learning. Tags: .

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Elizabeth Symington  |  . at .

    I love it how u broke down the steps of making a goal as “ridiculously easy as possible.” The article is very well written. Thanks for sharing!

    In a teaching class that I took we focused a lot on the “what” goals, except we called them measurable outcomes. If you have a goal like wanting the kids to learn Spanish and at the end of the year evaluate their progress, it’s going to be hard to see if your teaching style worked. If you rewrite the goal as, “The students will be able to speak, read and write basic conversations in Spanish. They will also know the numbers up to 100, the colors and all the fresh produce.” This is student focused (not teacher focused) goal and it is a measurable outcome.


  • 2. susan2009  |  . at .

    Great addition to the article, Elizabeth. I like the idea of student-focused as opposed to teacher-focused goals.



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