My Grandmother was always encouraging me to set goals and work hard to achieve them.
She would tell me not to be a follower and not to set limits on what I could achieve. She truly believed that there were no limits that you could achieve whatever you wanted.
She once told me the following story about a radish and a milk bottle, it was a story that I have never forgotten.
A Farmer's Lesson In Life
A farmer won a first prize at the country fair for his huge radish that was the exact shape and size of a quart of milk bottle.
Many were curious as to how the farmer was able to grow this radish that was the exact shape of a milk bottle.
Finally one gentleman went up to the farmer and asked the question. The farmer replied, "It was easy. I got the seed growing and then I put it into the milk bottle. It had nowhere else to go."
You can use this story as an analogy to life - our lives are shaped by the kind of surroundings we place ourselves in, the people that we allow to influence us, and the goals we give ourselves.
These Are Key Ingredients
If we only dream and take no action then we get no further. But if we plan, set a goal and take action then our life takes a different shape.
Now, the important parts of goal setting, though, go way beyond just writing down a goal statement and thinking that somehow your goal will be reached.
To write a goal is only a minor part of the way forward. The rest of the elements of how to reach that goal must also be stated clearly and with a definite time frame to each step.
This means that you must develop a detailed plan of action where each action step is detailed on what you must do, when and how and how much time it will take. If you do not make your plan detailed in this way and set specific target dates for completion, you will simply not be creating any kind of expectation in your mind or urgency that helps keep you moving.