One of my passions is delivering talks as I love to share my enthusiasm for life, and enable others to live their lives more fully – happier and healthier ideally!

As such, I was invited back to talk to the Federation of Small Businesses (I’d spoken last year at their October conference) at their January meeting. I was asked to deliver a 15-minute talk to around 40 attendees on the subject of ‘Goal Setting’ in alignment with January being a time for New Year’s resolutions.

In my mind, New Year’s resolutions tend to be ‘off the cuff’ decisions rather than well-planned and thought-out goals that want to be achieved. And whilst they may inspire, how often do they actually deliver results? I decided to make this the basis for my talk, the crux of which I want to share with you now.

So, if we want to turn the resolutions into well-planned goals, what does that really look like and how do we make them more achievable?

I used the GROW model to demonstrate defining goals and what needs to be put in place to execute them, as shown in the diagram and explanation below:

Image result for GROW model

GOAL – What is your goal? What is it that you specifically want to achieve?

  • A goal is what you want to work towards and what you want to achieve. By knowing what you want in life, whether it is a new job or to build your dream house, when you know what you want to achieve, you can put things into place to help make that happen.

REALITY – What is the reality of your current situation? Are you in a position to make your goal happen right now? What and who do you know to help you achieve your goal?

  • It is important to understand where you are at present, and what you need to do to achieve your goals. It’s about identifying the skills, experience and knowledge you have or may need to gain in order to move forward, where you are financially, who you have in your network i.e. family, friends, work colleagues etc.

OPTIONS – What options are available to you to make this happen?

  • When you really start to think about the various options available to you, you will begin to realise that there are lots of different ways of doing things to make your dreams and goals your reality. You don’t just need to look at things one-dimensionally. Be curious. Ask questions and get creative when you start to think about the different options you can explore to make things happen.

WILL – What motivates you? Can you use this energy towards achieving your current goal?

  • Will describes your drive and motivation, and when you identify what it is that does so, you can harness that energy, replicate it and make it happen again and again to achieve whatever goal(s) you choose to achieve.

In terms of putting the GROW model into context versus making a resolution, from a personal perspective, my resolution is to plan meals, be aware of what I’m eating, undertake more planned exercise and embrace myself more with Joe Wicks and his ‘Lean in 15’ approach. (This, in itself, is a topic for another blog post!) In short though, I started to action this resolution, but I confess to have fallen slightly off the bandwagon due to other demands on my time. However, by contrast, the Goals I’ve set myself, specifically, are the ones I am still on track with right now. Here are a couple of my goals for 2020:

I want to complete 50 Park Runs before the end of March 2020.

This is a clearly defined GOAL. It is REALISTIC – I’ve counted how many Saturdays there are until then, and I can make it happen. In terms of OPTIONS – I have a choice of Saturdays to do it, and having counted, I still have some to spare even though I am on holiday for one of them! And in terms of WILL – I am really motivated, as I love getting out first thing on a Saturday morning to run and meet up with my Park Run friends. It’s a great atmosphere. My motivation is such that I went to a fundraising ball on a Friday night, getting to bed at 1am, and I was still at my Park Run 8 hours later – running on a very cold, but bright morning!

My other goal is to get my second book written. To do so, I have allocated time every Wednesday to make it happen. It is doable if I put my mind to it, as most of the key content has been written; it just needs re-visiting, editing and having some other previously created content integrated. This is a specific goal that I aim to achieve, and in my mind it is realistic, given the time that I have allocated to create the additional content and work on the edits. However, I also know that the time frame that I have given myself is movable as nothing is ever set in stone. The important thing is having them in place as it gives me a framework to adhere to, and ultimately will help me achieve my goal. My editor and I are back in flow and I love the momentum that our creative collaboration brings – again, I am pulling on the passion within me to make it happen.

So, what do you want to achieve this year? Can you use the GROW model to help you make it happen?

Key tips:

  • Be passionate about the goal you want to achieve.
  • Take time to think about how you are going to make it happen, and whether it is realistic for you right now.
  • Know that even when you set a goal and put timelines in place, they can be moveable – life happens!
  • Enjoy working towards them – it’s not the destination, it’s the journey that is important!