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Guide To Set Life Goals - Start with Short Term Goals

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"Would you tell me which way I ought to walk from here?"

"That depends a good deal on where you want to get to," - said the cat.

"I don't much care where," - said Alice

"Then it doesn't matter which way to walk," - said the cat.

- Excerpt From Alice's Adventures In Wonderland

You landed on this article because you are trying to figure out your life goals and the purpose of your existence.

Congratulations! You are exactly where you need to be.

In this guide, we will dive deep into the world of goal setting and discuss different types of life goals everyone should know about. 

Goals Give Meaning To Life

Whether you want to shed a few pounds, spend more time with family or take up more challenging roles at work, there is something about starting over, setting goals, and pushing yourself forward for personal success. 

But the goal-setting process keeps changing over time (as we grow and our priorities change).  The goals you set as a teenager or in your twenties will differ from those you set in your forty or fifties. 

goals give meaning to life

No matter the age, what matters, in the end, is to have a meaningful life – a life with purpose.

A Harvard study revealed that purpose-driven people live longer. Another study shows that people with a sense of purpose are 15% more likely to live longer. ( Source: Forbes)

So, continually revisit and update your life goals and continue to work towards them. 

Why Set Goals in Life?

Many of us live with the idea that I must "follow my heart and go with the flow."

There is nothing wrong with following your heart, but going with the flow can easily ruin you.

You see, the flow always goes downhill, and it takes everything down with it. 

So, the more thoughtful way to live is by planning, setting goals, and making decisions based on your principles rather than on your mood or momentary urges.

When you set clear goals and work persistently towards them, your mind, body, and soul synergize towards an uphill growth.

Thus, getting a hold of your objectives and life goals is pivotal for a healthy being. 

Now, let's introduce different types of goals in life. 

Different Types of Goals in Life 

Your goals in life can vary based on time frame and scope. Here are some different kinds of goals you should set in life.

1.    Time-Based Goals

"They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself." - Andy Warhol

In time-based goals, you set yourself a deadline before which you must complete the task. Beginning with a clear end in mind before starting can help you track your progress and picture the outcome of your goals.

Time-based goals are divided into two main categories; they can either be short term and long-term goals.

      i.        Short Term Goals

These are the brief and straightforward tasks accomplished, usually within days, weeks, or months. They mount over one another to lead ultimately to your bigger goal in life. 

Here are a few short term goals examples

Examples of Short Term Goals
1 Setting a monthly budget to save extra for a rainy day
2 Getting into a book club
2 Starting a passive income source
2 Making a to-do list every week and sticking to it
2 Taking up a language course

Another way that you can use to organize your short-term goals is by keeping track of everything that you need to do.

For this, you can prepare a weekly schedule, that mentions all the tasks you need to do.

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    ii.        Stepping Stone Goals 

Short-term goals are further divided into smaller goals known as Stepping Stone Goals. Stepping stone goals are minor short-term goals that help you reach the big vision. 

For example:

Your goal is to drop 5 kgs in a month, setting a smaller and easily attainable goal such as working out and eating fewer calories every day is a 'stepping stone' goal. 

Stepping stone goals are also known as enabling goals or foundational goals. They can be considered as daily, weekly, or bi-weekly 'objectives.' 

   iii.        Long Term Goals

Long-term goals are the ones that consume a significant chunk of your time. They progress gradually over a prolonged period. These goals often define who you are. Such goals demand perseverance and diligent efforts focused on the outcome. 

Here are some long term goals examples

Examples of Long Term Goals
1 Paying off college debts
2 Buying your own house
2 Starting a business
2 Traveling to your dream destination
2 Landing a job at your dream company

2.    Lifetime Goals

This is the most simple and basic component of life: our struggles determine our successes.”
- Mark Manson, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life

A lifetime goal is a major accomplishment you aim for in your lifespan. It reflects your deep aspirations based on your principles and values. 

They can take anywhere from a year to a whole lifetime.

 Here are examples of lifetime goals:

Examples of Life Time Goals
1 Becoming eco-friendly by planting trees, using biodegradable products, and reducing the consumption of fuel.
2 Serving humanity by volunteering at an old home, joining a social service organization, or speaking for the social justice of marginalized groups of the society.
2 Fighting for the nation by joining the armed forces.
2 Creating a difference in the lives of the underprivileged by teaching them, feeding them, or rescuing them from potentially dangerous environments.
2 Striving to become a good person and lead a life of good deeds.


3.    Personal Goals

personal goals

All of us need constant renewal. As it is said that;

"To learn is to live; as you stop learning, you stop living."

Personal goals particularly have to do with your personality development. They are goals you want to achieve to improve yourself; your performance, personality, appearance, etc. 

Personal goals intend to polish you into a more inspiring and galvanizing individual. 

These goals include: 

  • Physical and Health Goals

  • Personal Development Goals

  • Spirituality Goals

Personal goal examples include:

Examples of Personal Goals
1 Breaking a bad habit
2 Starting a self-care routine
2 Writing a diary or a journal
2 Starting a regular physical activity
2 Reading motivational and spiritual content before going to bed

4.    Life-Based Goals

Life-based goals are goals in different areas of life. Life goal examples include the following:

       i.          Career Goals

life based goals

These goals encompass your professional triumphs. During our daily work life, we often lose sight of our true mission and success.

So, we must set professional goals to keep the future of our careers in line with our dreams. These goals involve personal scrutiny of your work skills and talents.

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Below are some career goals examples

Examples of Career Goals
1 Getting a promotion
2 Becoming an asset for your employer
2 Being a more productive employee
2 Improving communication with coworkers and budding teamwork
2 Learning something new to enhance your skill set

      ii.          Business Goals

A successful business is constantly growing and expanding. No business can grow without clear and well-thought goals which are set way ahead of time.

Even corporate leaders like Coca-Cola, Tesla and Microsoft set annual, biannual, and quarterly goals to keep the company moving in the desired direction.

Here are a few examples of goals of a business:

Examples of Business Goals
1 Making more sales than your competitors
2 Becoming the most popular brand in your category
2 Opening a new branch or outlet
2 Providing better consumer experience
2 Introducing a new marketing strategy

goals and objectives flowchart


     iii.          Financial Goals

Financial goals are money and finance related goals. Setting financial goals takes you towards wealth and financial success.

Here are some examples:

Examples of Financial Goals
1 Getting insurance
2 Investing
2 Opening up a saving account
2 Doing a side-hustle for extra income
2 Cutting down on expenses

     iv.          Educational Goals

Educational goals are goals related to attaining knowledge, education and qualification.

Here are a few examples:

Examples of Educational Goals
1 Enrolling into an online course
2 Opting for higher education
2 Learning new industry practices
2 Staying up to date by reading newspapers, articles, etc.
2 Learning a new skill

     v.        Relationship Goals  

Humans are social animals. We form bonds and relationships with the people we interact with. Relationship goals are the goals we set to mend, improve and build relationships in life.

Here are some examples:

Examples of Relationship Goals
1 Giving quality time to your family
2 Meeting friends regularly
2 Going on a vacation with friends/family
2 Calling your loved ones regularly
2 Enhancing communication to avoid conflict

Summing Up

 As you sow so shall you reap.

A life without purpose becomes constantly boring, unpleasant and unfilling. Setting goals leads to a purpose driven life filled with challenges, accomplishments and success.

No matter where you are in life and what you are striving for, continue to set goals and work hard towards them – sooner or later you’ll reap the benefits.