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7 Tips for Achieving Long Term Goals

Accomplishing a goal that you have set can be challenging. There are numerous activities that you may need to complete to achieve your goal.

Here are seven tips that will help reduce any difficulties that may arise while achieving your long-term goals.


Write Down Your Goals

Write your goals down on a piece of paper, in a journal or create a word document. The goals you write should reinforce what you wish to achieve and when you want to achieve them. Keep it somewhere visible, so it acts as a constant reminder of your goal.

Research from Michigan State University shows that 76% of people who write down their goals are more likely to achieve them compared to 43% of those who don’t.

To Do list for your goals

Keep Your Goals Specific

Maintaining an understanding of your goal not only means knowing what the goal is but what you need to do to achieve it. Therefore, when outlining your goal, be as specific as possible.

A good start would be using the SMART criteria – a well-known technique to draft goals:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Realistic
  • Time-related

If there is something that you will not compromise on, then state it; if there is something that you are willing to change, then say it. For example, if you need your goal achieved by a specific time, again, state it.

For example:

  • To complete my Bachelor of Information Technology by the end of July 2022.
  • To save $2,000 by December 2021 to buy a new phone.


Focus on Short Term Goals

Achieving a long-term goal is a marathon, not a sprint. No matter how many tasks you need to undertake to achieve your goal, you will not be able to finish all of them overnight.

Chris Do outlines the benefits of breaking down your big goal into smaller parts in the video below.

Instead of placing focus on achieving your big goal, break it down. Determine specific tasks that you need to complete and turn these into smaller individual goals. This will allow you to focus on one smaller goal that will make up your bigger goal.

Using the previous examples, you would then have the following:

Long-term Goal:

  • To complete my Bachelor of Information Technology by the end of July 2022.

Small tasks:

  • Allocate at least 2 hours per week for research and readings.
  • Work on the assessment tasks for at least 1 hour per week.
  • Write down all my questions about the units I’m studying and discuss them with my lecturers.

Long-term Goal: 

  • To save $2,000 by December 2021 to buy a new phone.

Small tasks:

  • Swap some of the brands I buy at the supermarket for a home brand or cheaper options
  • Setup a savings account and transfer at least $10 per week into it.
  • List my monthly expenses and try to reduce unnecessary expenditures such as re-evaluating monthly subscriptions.
  • Reduce takeaways orders by 50% and start eating at home.


Develop a Plan For Your Goals

To achieve your goal, you will need to complete numerous activities. Developing a plan will assist you in not only outlining the tasks which need to be completed but to understand which tasks are the most important and when you should focus on each.

Your plan should feature as much detail as possible. The details listed is so you know exactly what you need to do. At a minimum, your plan should clearly outline the details of each task and when they need to be completed.

There are several ways to develop a plan. They can be as simple as creating a bullet point list, a GANTT chart or using a template from Word. If you wish to create a more professional looking plan, platforms such as Trello or allow for tracking your progress in achieving your long-term goal.


Who Is Accountable For Your Goals

Of the seven tips listed, this one is by far the easiest. Who is responsible for you achieving your goal? The only person who can achieve your goal is you ,so it is even more important to take responsibility for completing each task. Holding yourself to account can also act as a reminder of what tasks need completing and when.

One of the easiest ways to ensure you are achieving your goals is to tell someone, whether a family member or friend, who can give you the encouragement you need to complete each task.


Get Feedback on Your Goals

As you work through the tasks needed to achieve your long-term goal, you hope they have been completed correctly. While this may be the case, asking someone for feedback may show another point of view that may aid in achieving your goal.

Gaining feedback from someone interested in your goal is not only beneficial to you, but it can also assist in providing motivation and direction.

The word Feedback surrounded with empty speech bubbles

Feedback will not always be positive. It is important to remember that if you have asked someone to provide feedback on your goal, not only listen to the feedback but be open to exploring other ideas. After receiving feedback, you can decide how to act upon what was said.


Evaluate and Reassess Your Goals

The best way to ensure you are working towards achieving your goals is to take the time to evaluate and reassess you work. This shouldn’t be completed only at the end; but be undertaken as each task is finished.

Reassessing isn’t about changing the goal; it is about pinpointing tasks that may limit the ability to achieve your goal and making necessary changes to achieve your long-term goal.


Good luck on your long-term goals settings.