Don Roulo is the CEO (Chief Encouragement Officer) of Life Quest. He is a life, career and business coach as well as a Certified 48 Days Workshop Facilitator. He travels nationally and internationally to conduct business and career training as well as marriage and family workshops.
By DON ROULO
“I wish I had a million dollars – hot dog!” This is what George Bailey says in the drug store at near the beginning of the movie It’s A Wonderful Life. He crosses his fingers on one hand and pushes down a handle on a cigar lighter with the other hand. If it lights it must mean his wish will come true. Wishes, dreams and goals – though we use the words interchangeably, they are not the same.
A wish is a pie in the sky thought with little or no chance of ever happening, just like George Bailey. You can wish you could flap your arms and fly to the moon, but it is not physically possible. Just to be clear, there is nothing wrong with starting with pie in the sky thinking to get the ball rolling.
A dream is a thought, a burning desire, about your life, which has captured your heart and mind and will not let go of you. It continues to roll around in your heart and mind. A dream is something you have never achieved before and will go beyond your current limitations.
A goal is a step toward your dream. As you achieve each goal, you are one step closer to your dream. Every goal consists of smaller steps along the way. It is simply a matter of planning. Small steps lead to achieving goals. Achieving several goals leads to achieving your dreams.
How can you be SMART with your dreams and goals? SMART is an acronym to help you remember how to achieve your dreams – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time Frame. Let’s break down each one briefly.
Specific – What is it you want? Be specific. I like what Stephen Covey says in The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective people. The number two habit is to ‘begin with the end in mind.’ Before you even start, know where you want to end up. For example, don’t just say you want ‘more money.’ Be specific – how much more?
Measurable – Some things are easy to measure. If you want to lose weight, you have a scale to measure your progress. However, if you want to be a better parent, how can it be measured? You can start by measuring how much undivided attention you give your children. Spend at least 15 minutes together with no electronic devices or distractions. Time spent with your children will lead to being a better parent.
Achievable – Your dreams and goals must be achievable. This does not mean it has to be something that has been done before. Going into space or running the four minute mile was never done before, until someone did it and now they are commonplace. Achievable answers the question, is it possible? Is it achievable for a 65 year old to run a marathon? Absolutely!
Realistic – It is certainly achievable for a 65 year old to run a marathon, but is it realistic? The answer is yes, but there are definite criteria which need to be taken into consideration. Is it realistic to think a 65 year old who has never run a day in their life can run a marathon tomorrow? Absolutely not! Running a marathon for a 65 year old is achievable, but not realistic unless health, training, education and planning are part of the picture.
Time Frame – You can have all four of the things I just mentioned, but if you put no time frame to it, you only have a wish. You must have a deadline for completing a series of steps to reach your goals and dreams. If you are running a marathon you will have to buy some running shoes. By what date are you going to buy them? You will have to start training. When will you start? You must have a time frame attached to your goals and dreams, or you will never reach them!
What can you do today to start being SMART about reaching your goals and dreams?
About the Author
Don Roulo is a life, career and business coach as well as a Certified 48 Days Workshop Facilitator. He travels nationally and internationally to conduct business and career training as well as marriage and family workshops.
As a business consultant, he has written business plans and worked to market products or services as well as organizing financial statements for investors. Because of his success in the sales and business arena, Don has been blessed with the opportunity to train, motivate and inspire others. His passion is to motivate and equip people to find their passion and achieve their goals and God given destiny.