Being able to describe your goals in written form gives you the best chance of goal success. Writing down your goals helps you to clarify exactly what you want to achieve, which helps guide your daily actions towards goal achievement.
Written down goals are more powerful than goals you keep in your mind. But, writing down your goals is the first step towards your goal achievement. Achieving your goals takes courage, commitment, and motivation. Taking the time to write down your goals in the morning and review them at night, ensures you make real progress towards your goals every day.
Writing down your goals forces you to get clear on what you want to accomplish. Writing your goals down provides motivation and helps you to focus on activities that are important each day, rather than reacting.
When you define your goals, you give yourself a destination to reach and daily direction. This ensures you don’t get distracted and overwhelmed.
In this article, I’m going to share why a written goal is more powerful, what happens when you write down your goals, and the importance of writing down your goals.
To improve your goal setting, read my essential guide to setting goals.
What happens when you write down your goals
You are more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down. Writing down your goals helps you clarify what you want to achieve in the future, and ensures you are emotionally and intellectually engaged in achieving your goal.
Writing down your goals doesn’t need to take long, but should form an essential part of your successful morning routine.
Taking the time to write down your goals gets you clear on what you want to accomplish each day and builds motivation and momentum. When you are crystal clear on your goals, you become emotionally engaged in goal achievement.
Writing down your goals helps you visualise the future you want and clarifies what it would feel like to achieve your goals.
If you write down your goals, you have a clear picture of where to invest your time and energy each day, which boosts confidence, motivation, and excitement.
Read also: how to set measurable goals.
Why should you write your goals down?
Writing down your goals helps create a vision in your mind of how you want to be in the future. You can visually see the goal and understand the difference it will make in your life.
When you see something you want to achieve, it creates change in how you act as you have clarity and direction. You are more likely to be productive and creative if you can identify how the goal achievement will transform your life.
Read more about the benefits of goal setting.
Why is a written goal more powerful?
Studies show that goal setters achieve their goals. People who write down their goals when goal setting are even more likely to have success getting to where they want to go.
There’s a brain-to-hand connection that comes into effect. Writing down your goals plants the goal in your brain, and once it’s there, it sticks.
The importance of writing down your goals
Here are 5 benefits of writing down your goals.
1. Get clear on what you want
Writing down your goals helps you get clear on what you want to achieve in life. It takes your goals out of your mind and makes them visible and real.
When you write down your goals, you clarify your future. If you’re not clear about what you want, or where you want to go, you’ll lack direction. If you have no focus, it’s easy to get distracted and spend time on activities that simply aren’t important to you.
Writing down your goals narrows your focus and provides short-term motivation and excitement. Written goals force you to choose specific goals that are important to you and filter out things, activities, and people that aren’t.
Read also: how to set short-term goals.
2. Stay motivated
Writing down your goals, and making progress daily, helps you stay on track and feeling motivated. To stay motivated, it’s essential to set exciting goals and then take action.
When writing down your goals, set goals that matter to you, and paint a picture of who you want to be in the future. Making your goals measurable and time-bound gives you the measurements to track progress and plot your progress towards achieving your goals.
Making progress on your goals boosts motivation and helps you lay out the action steps needed to make further progress. When your goals are exciting and motivating, you want to achieve your goals.
Get more tips to increase motivation.
3. Narrows your focus
Writing down your goals helps narrow your focus and aligns your thoughts with your actions. We live in a world of opportunity meaning we have an abundance of choices.
Without clear goals, you can jump from activity to activity and become easily distracted and scattered. Rather than having a clear plan and path to follow, our time, energy, and focus can get pulled off course unless we have clarity around our goals.
Having a small number of specific, measurable goals allows us to focus only on what is crucially important to us.
Get proven tips to narrow your focus.
4. Greater productivity
When writing down your goals it’s essential to have measurements and a deadline to achieve your goal. Having measurements and deadlines increases focus and gives you something specific to work towards.
It also helps you manage time more effectively and increases productivity. Without a deadline, there is nothing specific to shoot for, which causes you to waste time and energy.
When you set a deadline, your brain takes your goal seriously. With measurements and deadlines, you can begin to break achieving your goal down into specific action steps.
When writing down your goals, make sure the goal and deadline are challenging and exciting, but also achievable.
5. Measure progress
When working towards your goals, it’s essential to measure and celebrate progress along the way. If you don’t feel like you’re making the progress you want, start measuring progress backward from where you started.
Even if the progress feels small, any improvement is progress towards your goals. When you write down your goals and review progress daily or weekly, you will see how far you’ve come.
If you don’t, it may feel like no progress has been made. The next time you set goals for your business and life, the first place to start is to write them down.
Writing down your goals helps you describe your goals vividly, ensuring you intellectually engage and emotionally commit to achieving goals that are important to you.
The ability to write down your goals, and focus on goal achievement every day, is strongly associated with goal success.
Writing down your goals not only forces you to get crystal clear about what you want, but the act of setting goals in written form also increases your commitment and focus to achieving your goals.
Now I’d love to hear from you.
What one difference could writing down your goals make?
What one tip on goal setting can you share that has helped you the most?
Leave a comment below and let us know.
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About Mark Pettit
Mark Pettit is a time management coach and accountability coach based in Colchester, Essex, UK. He provides time management coaching programs and accountability coaching programs to business owners and entrepreneurs in the UK, US and Canada.
Mark also writes about time management, productivity and goal achievement. Each month, over 10,000 people read Mark’s articles to help them achieve their goals faster.
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