Dreams & Goals

Goal Setting

The Importance of Goal Setting

What to discover or Recall:

Success is not by chance or luck.
A program without goals is like a ship without a rudder.
Goals are what give direction to improvement.
It is the journey not the destination that is the most important & rewarding part of goals.

| Total Program Review | Goals Takes Time & Effort | Seven Steps to Successful Goal Setting |


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Total Program Review Essential to Successful Goal Setting

Success is not by chance or luck. Successful people have learned the value of setting specific goals and focusing their efforts toward achieving them. “Goals are the bridges that allow you to cross from DREAMS to REALITY.” A program and coach “without goals is like a ship without a rudder.” Goals are what give direction to physical and mental training and improvement. They are the basis of self-motivation and the foundation of all achievements. However, goals must be personal. Something that you as a coach, personally, want and have a strong desire to pursue and achieve. It is because of this intense, personal desire to reach goals that will push you through adversity to success.

Accomplishing goals and making dreams come true is incredibly satisfying. However, it is the journey, not the destination, that is the most important and rewarding part of dreams. You must never stop improving and making it a goal to get better each and every day in some small way. Daily improvements eventually add up to huge gains. You should always keep moving forward setting new goals and dreaming new dreams. You may never reach their ultimate, long term dream. However, this is irrelevant. The important thing is that you will become like your dreams.

Have high ambitions, not expectations. High expectations can only lead to big disappointments. While, on the other hand, high ambitions never get disappointed and are the basis to all success. You must stay ambitious, making every day the best it can be. One day at a time. The best and most productive place to be is in the present. Too much time thinking about the past causes regret. Too much thinking about the future causes worry.


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Goals Achieved with Little Effort are Seldom Worthwhile or Lasting.

“A perfect example to never give up!”

Coach Wooden

Hall of Fame Coach John Wooden

In July of 2009 Sporting News unveiled a list of sports’ 50 greatest coaches of all time, as selected by a panel of 118 Hall of Fame, championship coaches and other experts. John Wooden, who at UCLA won a record 10 Division I men’s basketball championships in 12 years, was a runaway winner. Coach Wooden received 57 first-place votes from the panel, which included seven World Series-winning managers, four Super Bowl champion coaches and the winningest coaches in the NBA, NHL and college basketball. Green Bay Packers great Vince Lombardi came in second place in SN’s rankings, receiving 20 first-place votes.

This was a great honor, but it is sometimes forgotten that John Wooden won his first National Championship in his 29th year of coaching. The following are some steps in that journey:

1. When Coach Wooden became the head coach at UCLA in 1948, he was led to believe that his team would have a new arena by the end of his third season. The arena was not ready for the team until 1965, at the start of John Wooden's eighteenth season.

2. In 1950 UCLA made the NCAA Tournament but was eliminated in the first round.

3. In 1952 UCLA made the NCAA Tournament but was eliminated in the first round.

4. In 1956 UCLA made the NCAA Tournament but was eliminated in the first round.

5. In 1959 Coach Wooden had the poorest season of his UCLA career winning 14 games and losing 12.

6. In 1962 UCLA made it to the Final Four but lost in the Semi Finals.

7. In 1963 Arizona State defeated UCLA 93-79 in the first game of the NCAA Tournament, and the final score made the game sound closer than it was. Arizona State was leading 62-31 at halftime. That season was Coach Wooden’s 16th at UCLA; that appearance was his fifth NCAA tournament. In those tournament games, he had a painful record of only three wins and nine losses - the worst record of any of the coaches that participated in the tournament that year.

8. In 1964 Coach won the first of his ten National Championships.

In his book Pyramid of Success with Jay Carty, Coach Wooden summed it up this way:

Our society has been permeated by a mind-set of immediate gratification. Simply put, people are impatient. They want too much too soon. They have lost sight of an overarching truth:

In life, worthwhile accomplishments and acquisitions take time. Usually the better the reward, the more time it takes to acquire it.

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Seven Steps to Successful Goal Setting

Useless Goals

To accomplish your goals you first need to know how to set them. You can’t simply say, “I want to” and expect it to happen. Goal setting is a process that starts with careful consideration of what you want to achieve, and ends with a lot of hard work to actually do it.  Goal setting not only allows you to take control of your game, it also provides you a benchmark for determining whether you are actually succeeding.

#1: Set Goals that Motivate You

Motivation is the key factor to achieving goals. When you set goals for yourself, it is important that they motivate you. This means making sure that they are important to you, and that there is value in achieving them. If you have little interest in the outcome or if they are irrelevant, the chances of you putting in the work to make them happen are slim to none.

#2: Set Relevant Goals

Goal achievement requires commitment, so to maximize the likelihood of success, you need to feel a sense of urgency and have an “I must do this” attitude. In keeping goals meaningful, you will develop the necessary focus you need to get ahead and do what you want. Without this type of focus, you will end up with inconsistent and fragment goals that will only “dribble away” or squander your time and efforts.

#3: Set Attainable Goals

Make sure that it’s possible to achieve the goals you set. If you set a goal that you have no hope of achieving, you will only demoralize yourself and erode your confidence. However, resist the urge to set goals that are too easy. Accomplishing a goal that you did not’t have to work hard for can be anticlimactic. However, by setting realistic and challenging goals, you hit the balance you need. These are the types of goals that require you to “raise the bar” and they bring the greatest personal satisfaction.

#4: Set Specific and Measurable Goals

Your goals must be clear and well defined. Vague or generalized goals are unhelpful because they don’t provide sufficient direction. Your goals need to show you the way. Make it as easy as you can to get where you want to go by defining precisely where you want to end up.

Be sure to set goals that you have control over. Goals such as making all-league, all-state, or all-American you have no control over. Include precise totals, percentages, quantities, etc. in your goal setting so you can measure your degree of success. If your goal is set without a way to measure your success, you will miss out on the celebration that comes with knowing you have actually achieved your goal.

#5: Set Time-Limited Goals

Your goals must have deadlines or time frames. Again, this means that you know when you can celebrate success. When you are working on a deadline, your sense of urgency increases and achievement will come that much quicker. Group your goals into immediate, short term and long term.

Immediate goals: Specific goals aimed at a specific event or competition occurring today or within a week.

Short term or intermediate goals: May be specific or less defined that require several steps to achieve. Time frame is usually within six months or a season.

Long term goals are your “Dream” or career goals that you wish to achieve. Usually takes years or a lifetime to accomplish.

#6: Set Goals in Writing

Goals are the foundation of your motivation, achievements, and success. Therefore, goal setting is much more than simply saying or thinking what you want to happen. Unless you clearly define exactly what you want and understand why you want it the first place, your odds of success are considerably reduced.

The physical act of writing down a goal makes it real and tangible. You have no excuse for forgetting about it. As you write, use the word “will” instead of “would like to” or “might”. Create a goal “To Do” list. Post your goals in visible places to remind yourself every day of what it is you intend to do and accomplish.

#7: Create a Plan of Action and Stick With it.

This step is often missed in the process of goal setting. You get so focused on the outcome that you forget to plan all of the steps that are needed along the way. By writing out the individual steps, and then crossing each one off as you complete it, you’ll realize that you are making progress towards your ultimate goal. This is especially important if your goal is big, demanding, or long-term.

Remember, goal setting is a constant, ongoing activity not just a means to an end. Build in reminders to keep yourself on track, and make regular time-slots available to review your goals. As time goes by, your intermediate and long term goals will evolve into short term or immediate goals. Some goals will be achieved, while others will be modified or replaced. The important thing is that you will always have direction.

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