The New Science of Goal Setting and Achieving
Want the secret achieve your most important goal? Neuroscientists say the human brain has 100 billion neurons. 20,000 or so carry Dopamine. It is a neurotransmitter that makes us human and has been called the “motivation molecule.” This is crucial to understanding goal setting and achieving. Dopamine controls our brains communication and keeps us motivated. Dopamine activation provides us drive, focus, and concentration. It also provides pleasurable feelings, accomplishment, planning and the joys of life. It is one of the keys to our success in any endeavor.
Discoveries in science validate how to avoid the pitfalls and possible detrimental effects of goal setting. Likewise, how to tap the new science of goal achieving.
The Hazards of Goal Setting and Achieving
L.A. King and C.M.Burton state in their paper, The Hazards of Goal Pursuit, for the American Psychological Association, that there are difficulties with goal setting. If people are not ready, lack training, and are not committed they set standards too high and conflicts will derail their efforts. So, goal setting often has a negative impact on people’s emotions and performance.
Furthermore, RCI research found only 1/3 of managers do goals with employees in the workplace. Research suggests 80 percent of people do not have a goals for their life. Those who do, 70 percent fail to achieve what they want. In addition, about 40 percent of people create New Year’s resolutions and only 8 percent achieve them. In the United States and Britain, people watch an average of 28-32 hours of TV a week. Their talent remains dormant. They do not make the effort or do not know how to apply a goal achieving process. These people’s incredible potential for a better and more fulfilling life is untapped. Finally, Locke and Latham found over 100 studies that prove goalsetting improves results.
6 Successful Goal Setting and Achieving Steps
Do you want more personal and career success? The SCORES model intermingles proven goal principles with new research that you can apply to your situation:
- S-A few goals that are specific keep us focused and determined. This is where Dopamine helps us. With too many targets, it is easy to sidetrack and it is hard to give your best to all of them.
- C- Team collaboration on a objectives l gives us accountability beyond ourselves. It is also assuring that we are not the only ones shouldering the responsibility.
- O- Outcomes that are difficult and more challenging raise our game and willingness to learn. This does not mean they should be unrealistic but need to drive significant improvement to get our attention.
- R- Keep a written record to track and measure success. Research shows we are 42% more likely to achieve goals when we do this.
- E- Envision your results to find more success. This means we visualize it regularly in detail and the steps we will take to win. As we do, the difficult goal seems more realistic and we increase our commitment. Social psychologist Dr. Emily Balcetis at NYU, shows visualization makes goals 30% more doable, 17% easier and 23% more achievable. This is similar to the mental rehearsal. Olympic athletes do it in preparation for events with the world’s elite competitors.
- S– Above all, according to brain research, savor more goal achievement by activating and boosting your Dopamine by:
- A healthier diet and vitamin supplements
- Regular exercise
- Mediation or prayer
- On-going learning
- Goal setting efforts
In Summary, be hopeful for your future!
James Allen wrote in As a Man Thinketh, “The greatest discovery of our generation is that people can alter the outer aspects of their lives by changing the inner attitudes of their minds.” You have tremendous potential. Success and an optimistic outlook on life is a choice. It can be accelerated by considering how to ramp up our Dopamine. Too many people look at their life in a negative aspect. Each New Year, each new day and each new month is an opportunity to start again and create the future you want.
Speaker Earl Nightingale once said, “The problem isn’t in people achieving goals; they will do that. The problem is setting them in the first place.” Goal setting and achieving requires hope and builds momentum when you determine what you want out of life. Think in terms of balance. Do not just zero in on your career or finances. Remember other areas too such as family, friends, health, recreational, leisure and community. In addition, set short-term and long-term goals.
Superstar salesperson Lee Klampe said, “A goal without an action plan is only a joke.” In other words, what are definitive steps you can take to achieve your objectives? Goalsetting and achieving is a continuous improvement process. Napoleon Hill wrote, “Service, sacrifice and self-control are three words which must be well understood by the person who succeeds in doing something that is of help to the world.” Now, apply this new science to your life so the New Year can be your best year ever!
A Resource to Help
Do you want more success in life and in achieving your goals? If so, check out the Success Practices assessment and guidebook.