How do you plan your goals?

Tailo Mateus Gonsalves on September 02, 2018

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If you're talking about how to plan for the technical execution of goals; that's a big topic. You could write a PhD dissertation on various organizational and productivity systems and not scratch the surface. I'll simply refer you to GTD and let you use that as a jumping off point. This topic is deep.

If you're asking about how to think of and set goals, then the answer is to use Visions.

Think of achieving a goal like a line segment. It just reaches from one point to the next. Achieving vision is like a ray. It has a direction, but never ends. You never actually achieve a vision. Goals are just the points along the way to your unattainable vision. The vision gives the goals direction.

So most of us have probably heard of SMART goals:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Realistic
  • Timely

It can be helpful to think of a good vision as a bad goal.

Consider the following statement:

To become one of the leading experts and thought leaders in the software community in the field of scalable microservices and progressive web apps.

This is a very bad goal.

It's not specific, almost impossible to measure, and it is not timely. You could make the argument that it's technically attainable and maybe if you stretched it realistic (Somebody has to be a leading expert in microservices and PWAs.) All the same, it's a bad goal.

But it is an excellent vision! Now that we have our vision; we can derive our goals. Start long term.

  • Write and publish a book on PWAs in 2 years
  • Give a keynote at a conference on microservices in 4 years.

Big goals? Yes. But they are measurable, timely, and specific.

Then we break those down into sub-goals:

  • Write 20 blog posts on PWAs over the next year.
  • Speak at 5 conferences on microservices in the next 2 years.

And we can go further:

  • Write and publish on GitHub a PWA sample application in the next 3 months
  • Write and publish a sample back end for the PWA application using microservices in 6 months.

Meet all your long term goals? I have good news! Your vision is unattainable and you can set more.

Hope this helps!

 
 

I don't have goals. Best case I reach them, and then what? Probably I won't, and I'll feel shit about it. Watch this (Around 2:00). Thank me later. 🙃

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