In the last chapter, you learned about the importance of goal setting, specifically when it comes to actually committing to a goal and seeing what will be involved in order to reach that goal. While breaking down a goal, you will often see that there are sections or stages of tasks that need to be completed in order to attain that goal. These sections or stages of tasks can be labeled as short-term goals, while the overall goal is your long-term goal.
A short-term goal is a step or accomplishment that helps to bring you closer to your long-term goal. For instance, in the last chapter we talked about wanting to lose 100 pounds. If you lose 5 pounds, that can be considered a step or accomplishment toward your long-term goal of losing 100 pounds, since you only need to lose 95 more pounds to reach your long-term goal of losing 100 pounds. Every 5 pounds you lose brings you that much closer to your long-term goal of losing 100 pounds.
Similarly, if you want to earn a college degree, but have never taken a college course before, passing the entrance requirements to enter a college you want to enter can be considered a short-term goal, since you have achieved a stage or step that helps to bring you closer to your long-term goal of earning a college degree.
It’s important when setting lofty long-term goals that you break down the goal into smaller steps or stages that enable you to set short-term goals. Setting short-term goals is key for several reasons. One reason is that you can attain short-term goals more quickly than long-term goals. You can lose 5 pounds quicker than you can lose 100 pounds, and you can pass a college entrance exam quicker than you can earn a college degree.
Another reason setting short-term goals is important is because it helps to give you additional momentum toward achieving your long-term goals. Long-term goals are often challenging to reach, and over the course of the long journey, your devotion, motivation, attention span, and confidence can waver. Attaining short-term goals gives you added momentum and confidence that reinvigorates you to push harder toward the next short-term goal and your overall long-term goal.
As was mentioned in the last chapter, setting a short-term goal is also important because, just looking at long-term goals on the surface, they can seem impossible to achieve, but when you actually break them down into smaller tasks and short-term goals, long-term goals are much more achievable.
Therefore, in this chapter, you have learned the difference between short-term and long-term goals. You’ve learned why setting short-term goals on your way to achieving a long-term goal can help to reinvigorate you and give you additional momentum to reach that long-term goal. In the next chapter, you will learn why writing down your goals is so important.