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Archive for the ‘Goals’ Category

The power of setting weekly goals

In Goals, Procrastination on June 19, 2009 at 7:28 pm

I read many books focusing on the importance of goals. The techniques suggested there in were sometimes too theoretical, as if the reader wants to do Ph.d, and sometimes too cumbersome to implement in real life. I also read about long-term and short-term goals and tried to implement the techniques on my life.

Credit: Marcell Marra

Nothing worked well for a long time and I was frustrated only after a few days of practice. If there are no goals, there is a lack of focus and I experienced that. Your efforts are not directed in the right direction, you waste a lot of energy and time and your days are wasted on trifles. I kept planning and searching for the right solution that works, for me in particular. I wanted a strategy that is easy to implement and gives a sense of accomplishment soon. I am practicing one such strategy and it is working for me.

  1. Write down all your goals for the current month. Don’t overload the list with a variety of goals that might remain unfulfilled. Write only those goals that are important and the achievement of which brings a real change in your life. If your goal will take six-months or say ten years, then break the goal into fragments so that it is achievable easily.
  2. Break the plan of a particular goal to a weekly sub-plan. Describe what you want to do this week. Don’t be over-ambitious. Only plan what is easily approachable and gets accomplished.
  3. To plan better, I use Microsoft Project. It helps me track progress and has other useful features. You can also use Microsoft Excel or even Microsoft Outlook for this. If you are lagging behind, refine your activity so that you can do it in next week.

Prior to using Microsoft Project, I used a very simple Microsoft Excel sheet. I wanted to keep it very simple so that I don’t have to waste time just to fill it daily. You can add any other things you need to record.

Breaking goals into fragments and tracking your progress on a weekly basis gives a sense of accomplishment. You won’t feel overloaded nor does the goal remain neglected altogether. To avoid procrastination, start your day by visualizing the points I discussed in my earlier post Doing what needs to be done. To-Do List and Goals are two different things. Thord Daniel Hedengren has written a very good article on his blog titled Setting Weekly Goals to Increase Productivity. If you already use weekly goals, please let me know your plan.