Do You Have a Good Goalfriend, Girlfriend?

Women footballers 1914 from

Goals. Do you set yourself goals? It’s not a word I like actually as it always sounds a bit, well, ‘blokey.’ I used to positively swoon in meetings when the phrase ‘moving the goal posts came up‘. Which meant I was permanently on the smelling salts before I started my own business. Not that I have anything against the guys and their sporting metaphors. I just wish I could come up with an alternative word for it. Suggestions to me, please!

The plus is you at least know what I’m talking about.

Question: Do you set yourself goals?

I confess I didn’t always do so myself. I had ideas about what I wanted to do but I never wrote them down in any meaningful way. I didn’t allow myself to take time to think about what is was I really wanted. I went along with my first career choice. The idea that I had control over this, that I could choose to make a different working life, didn’t really occur to me until my children were pretty independent.

I think that’s true of a lot of women. We learn to put ourselves ‘on hold’. Are you ‘on hold’?

Things started moving for me when I went on a course where we had a whole afternoon to set goals. I had a lot of time to think about it as my employer had sent me on a 5 day course. Which was wonderful. A whole week to think and reflect! Unfortunately perhaps for them, my reflections led me to the goal of leaving my job and starting my own business. For which I am eternally grateful.

Sometimes we don’t realise that we actually want something different from what we have, until we take some time out to think about it. Life is busy and spending time thinking about what we want can feel a bit self indulgent. Banish such notions. You have one life and it’s up to you to make the best of it.

Here’s a suggestion

Give yourself a gift of some time to think about what you want in life.

Try to find some time for you, space when you are alone with your thoughts, and jot down three goals.

Find one for work or career, one for personal life, and perhaps one for relationships, either at work or home.

It’s probably best if you don’t make them all massive goals. Ideally go for something you can achieve in a few months. Success will give you a great confidence boost so you can aim higher next time. Try to have different end points too. Maybe your personal one can be achieved in a few weeks. Your work one may take longer.

Each of those three goals will probably have several smaller goals within them. That’s why we just have 3 at a time as each of those three will generate three more mini goals. 9 is plenty for anyone to deal with.

Most importantly, write down your goals in as much detail as you can. Writing reinforces intention. And for women, sharing their goals with a friend also helps reinforce intention. For men it’s more about the rewards. Tell a good friend what you’re planning to achieve. Have a ‘goalfriend girlfriend’ and support each other.

Be very specific and clear with yourself. Avoid vague terms like ‘be more healthy’ as they won’t help you much. Instead ask yourself, what does ‘being more healthy’ mean to you? For example, is it being able to walk further next week than you can this without getting puffed? Write that down. The first mini goal in that series might be deciding to walk somewhere three times a week.Write down where you will be walking and for how long.

If you want more success at work, what do you actually mean by that? Success is not a universal idea, you define your terms. Success for you might mean a promotion or it might mean being recognised for what you’re doing.

Close your eyes and see yourself being successful in whatever goal you have determined upon. You can do it!  Get a goalfriend and help and support each other. I wish you both much success.

PS. And if you can think of a better word than ‘Goals’ please let me know. Although it has allowed me to pun around with ‘girlfriend’ so maybe I’ve reclaimed it!

The Speak Up audio course for women who want to get ahead is now available. Click here for more details and to find out about the special offer.

 Picture above was taken in 1914!

Posted on August 4th, 2015 by

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