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Goal Setting Guide: Part 1 - Why You Should Set Goals

Why you should set goals

It’s 3am on a Thursday night and you’re furiously typing up the last page of your massive sociology paper. The paper is due tomorrow (… or is it today… when it’s this late/early, it’s hard to tell) and you’ve been frantically typing for hours now. As usual, you silently curse to yourself: this time was supposed to be different… I was supposed to follow the outline, stick to the class timeline, and get this done early… I hate that I’m a procrastinator.

We’ve all been there.

But it doesn’t, and shouldn’t, have to be this way. It’s time to set some goals. But why is this so important? How can goal setting help you in a way that, say, procrastinating can’t?

Setting Goals Increases Motivation.

Goal setting is, in a nutshell, a way to establish what you want the outcome of your actions to be. This alone can help increase your motivation to get things done. By setting a goal, you will automatically feel a sense of direction and will be motivated to reach that goal. If you’re writing a paper, set goals in increments. For example, let’s say your paper is due on a Friday, two weeks from now. Set a goal to finish the research and bibliography by Wednesday of the first week. Then, set goals based on word count or amount of pages. Every time you reach one of your goals, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment and will feel motivated to reach the final goal: turning in a polished paper.

Setting Goals Increases Achievement.

There’s plenty of evidence to show that setting goals increases the likelihood of your success. This ties back into motivation. You’re more likely to achieve and be successful if you set a goal for yourself to be successful. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy of the best kind. As you continue to reach your goals, you’ll be laying a strong foundation for achievements to come.

Setting Goals Leads to Lifelong Success.

They say practice makes perfect. Learning to set goals now while you’re a student will translate into success when you’ve graduated and started your career. The more often you set goals, self-motivate, and achieve, the better at goal setting you’ll become. This kind of skill will make you a successful student and eventually, the kind of worker that gets noticed and promoted for finishing projects well and on time.

I think we can agree that the last minute panic that comes with procrastinating is far from fun. What’s worse, though, is the uncertainness that comes with it: Did I pull it off? I didn’t get to edit this draft… what if it isn’t actually finished? Could I have done better with more time? Setting goals can help you avoid all of this. So now, we know exactly why you need to get your act together and set some goals!

Looking for somewhere to record and track your goals? Check out the Be Your Best You Notebooks by ClassTracker. 


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