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How Setting Goals Can Help You Live Your Best Life

Updated: Apr 14, 2023

“Happiness is not a goal... it's a by-product of a life well lived.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

With the new year around the corner, it is time to think about your goals: What do you want to achieve? What have you done so far? and where do you want to be in the future? This can be hard if it is not something you have spent much time thinking about before. Some goals might be major life changes like starting a new career, but others can be small changes like becoming more active.

By thinking about your goals, you can make sure that you'll be closer to living your good life next year. Goal setting can help you think about what steps you need to take to reach that goal and make sure you don’t miss anything important. If you haven't set goals before, you can start by discovering goals in each of the six Life Domains from the LifeCourseOnline Vision Tool.

  • Daily Life & Employment

  • Healthy Living

  • Social & Spirituality

  • Safety & Security

  • Community Living

  • Citizenship & Advocacy

When you think about setting goals within each domain, you can discover and define what is important to you in that area of life. Once you know what you want for the future, you can start setting goals that help you live your best life.

1. Make smarter decisions

By setting goals, you can start making small steps that can result in big changes. Sometimes it seems impossible to reach a really big goal, but by knowing your big goal, you can take smaller steps that will help you get closer to reaching that goal. Here are a few examples of making decisions to support your long-term goals:

  1. Maybe you want to become a yoga teacher. You can decide to sign up for a class that teaches you the basics. You'll be ready to be a yoga teacher in a few months.

  2. Maybe you want to have your own apartment. If your friends ask you to join them on a trip, you might decide not to go. That way, you can save money to afford an apartment in the future.

2. Stay motivated

Thinking about goals and how to meet them can help you stay motivated; As you keep taking steps toward the end goal, you become more motivated to achieve it; Research shows that “working toward a goal is a major source of motivation, which, in turn, improves performance.”[2]

By taking the time to set goals, your dreams are written down somewhere (whether it’s on paper or online), so you’re more likely to reach tem. Having clear goals will help you stay motivated to work towards your dream for the future.

For example, maybe your future plan includes moving out on your own. You have something to aim for and can take small steps to get there.

3. Keep you and your team accountable

Once you've set a goal, the next and most important step is to start working towards reaching that goal. However, we sometimes need that extra push.

Accountability to ourselves is important, but by sharing our goals with our support networks, we are more likely to meet them. Research shows that we are 33% more successful in meeting goals by writing them down, sharing them, providing updates, and asking for support.[3]. Not only will your support team be able to help you reach your goal, but you can all work together to make sure it helps make sure you finish what you planned to do.

LifeCourseOnline allows you to share your goals with your support network and request help when you need it to complete tasks.

Learn more about asking your network for support through the Raise Your Hand Feature on the LCO Support Page:

Remember, your goals can change along the way.

A goal you set a year ago may not be a goal you should set now. When things in your life change (like who is in your life to support you, what resources you have, and what you need), you may have to change your goal. And although setting and achieving them is important, they are not static or firm. You can are more likely to reach your goals by giving yourself space to adapt. You may also discover new goals. If you decide that a goal you set before is no longer what you want for your good life, you can always go back and update that goal. Goals change with our circumstances, current needs, and life plan. Set a time e to review your goals for yourself or with the people who support you to make sure that your goal is still right for you. Goal setting is a method to living your best life, not the means. Works Cited [1] Leslie Riopel, MSc. "The Importance, Benefits, and Value of Goal Setting." 14 June 2019. November 2022. [2] Guy-Evans, Olivia. "" 19 July 2022. Simply Psychology. November 2022. [3] Leslie Riopel, MSc. "The Importance, Benefits, and Value of Goal Setting." 14 June 2019. November 2022.

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