How Does Goal Setting Help Me Find My Life’s Purpose? 

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How will you know if you have achieved your life’s purpose? How will you know if you’re on your way to meeting the expectations you have set for yourself? 

Goal setting. You need to set goals to find your life’s purpose. 

I am asked a lot by clients about how they should go about setting goals in order to find their purpose in life. I almost always advise them to flip that question and look at it a different way: How can goal setting help me reach my life’s purpose? 

I approach it this way because I don’t believe you can set a goal if you don’t have an end result in mind. Goal-setting should not come before knowing what you want. The first step then, is to clarify your dreams and set your intentions. Find your life’s purpose and then figure out how to get there. That said, once your purpose is determined, goal-setting is one of the best tools to get there. 

Consider both long-term and short-term goals. Many people set long-term goals and forget the middle. Long-term goals are great, but short-term goals are the ones that keep you in check and move you forward, and neglecting to set them can get you sidetracked because you have nothing to look forward to. 

Try not to leave any gaps. You want to move, step to step, like stepping stones, measuring your progress along the way. Setting smaller goals helps you move toward your goal and feel accomplished without getting overwhelmed. By focusing on steps, versus leaps, you can avoid creating that static energy that typically makes people abandon their dreams. 

Goals also keep you honest. If you come up with some crazy excuse as to why you haven’t accomplished your goal by the deadline, you know you’re not being truthful to your dream. You are not committed to your dream, you’re more committed to your reality. 

Goals are also measurable things you can communicate to your support group — milestones to which they can hold you accountable. It’s a lot harder to give up on yourself when you have to answer to somebody. 

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Dr. Alex Ledgister is not your typical “Success Coach.” The former Marine who holds a Ph.D.

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