Blog Archive

Story: The Black Telephone



When I was a young boy, my father had one of the first telephones in our neighborhood. I remember the polished, old case fastened to the Wall. The shiny receiver hung on the side of the box. I was too little to reach the telephone, but used to listen with fascination when my mother talked to it.

Then I discovered that somewhere inside the wonderful device lived an amazing person. Her name was "Information Please" and there was nothing she did not know. Information Please could supply anyone's number and the correct time.

My personal experience with the genie-in-a-bottle came one day while my mother was visiting a neighbor. Amusing myself at the tool bench in the basement, I whacked my finger with a hammer, the pain was terrible, but there seemed no point in crying because there was no one home to give sympathy.

I walked around the house sucking my throbbing finger, finally arriving at the stairway. The telephone! Quickly, I ran for the footstool in the parlor and dragged it to the landing. Climbing up, I unhooked the receiver in the parlor and held it to my ear.

"Information, please," I said into the mouthpiece just above my head.

A click or two and a small clear voice spoke into my ear.

"Information."

"I hurt my finger..." I wailed into the phone, the tears came readily enough now that I had an audience.

"Isn't your mother home?" came the question.

"Nobody's home but me," I blubbered.

"Are you bleeding?" the voice asked.

"No,"I replied. "I hit my finger with the hammer and it hurts."

"Can you open the icebox?" she asked.

I said I could.

"Then chip off a little bit of ice and hold it to your finger," said the voice..

After that, I called "Information Please" for everything. I asked her for help with my geography, and she told me where Philadelphia was. She helped me with my maths.

She told me my pet chipmunk that I had caught in the park just the day before, would eat fruit and nuts.

Then, there was the time Petey, our pet canary, died. I called, "Information Please," and told her the sad story. She listened, and then said things grown-ups say to soothe a child. But I was not consoled. I asked her, "Why is it that birds should sing so beautifully and bring joy to all families, only to end up as a heap of feathers on the bottom of a cage?"

She must have sensed my deep concern, for she said quietly, "Wayne, always remember that there are other worlds to sing in."

Somehow I felt better.

Another day I was on the telephone, "Information Please."

"Information," said in the now familiar voice.

"How do I spell fix?" I asked.

All this took place in a small town in the Pacific Northwest. When I was nine years old, we moved across the country to Boston. I missed my friend very much.

"Information Please" belonged in that old wooden box back home and I somehow never thought of trying the shiny new phone that sat on the table in the hall. As I grew into my teens, the memories of those childhood conversations never really left me.

Often, in moments of doubt and perplexity I would recall the serene sense of security I had then. I appreciated now how patient, understanding, and kind she was to have spent her time on a little boy.

A few years later, on my way west to college, my plane put down in Seattle. I had about a half-hour or so between planes. I spent 15 minutes or so on the phone with my sister, who lived there now. Then without thinking what I was doing, I dialed my hometown operator and said, "Information Please."

Miraculously, I heard the small, clear voice I knew so well.

"Information."

I hadn't planned this, but I heard myself saying,

"Could you please tell me how to spell fix?"

There was a long pause. Then came the soft spoken answer, "I guess your finger must have healed by now."

I laughed, "So it's really you," I said. "I wonder if you have any idea how much you meant to me during that time?"

"I wonder," she said, "if you know how much your call meant to me.  I never had any children and I used to look forward to your calls."

I told her how often I had thought of her over the years and I asked if I could call her again when I came back to visit my sister.

"Please do," she said. "Just ask for Sally."

Three months later I was back in Seattle.

A different voice answered, "Information."

I asked for Sally.

"Are you a friend?" she said.

"Yes, a very old friend," I answered.

"I'm sorry to have to tell you this," She said. "Sally had been working part time the last few years because she was sick. She died five weeks ago."

Before I could hang up, she said,

"Wait a minute, did you say your name was Wayne ?" "

"Yes." I answered.

Well, Sally left a message for you. She wrote it down in case you called. "Let me read it to you."

The note said, "Tell him there are other worlds to sing in. He'll know what I mean."

I thanked her and hung up. I knew what Sally meant.

Never underestimate the impression you may make on others.

Whose life have you touched today?

Why not pass this on? I just did....

Lifting you on eagle's wings.

May you find the joy and peace you long for.

Life is a journey... NOT a guided tour.

Hard Work will Guarantee My Professional Growth?


 

By Junaid Tahir 

To be honest and straight forward with you, only hard work will NOT promote you in your professional life. There are several other aspects of your overall personality which are accounted for your growth. When I say overall personality, I mean your outer and inner personality. And when I say Outer personality, I mean your verbal (when you speak) and non-verbal (when you are not speaking) features of your personality. Together I call it "Corporate Image". In this article I shall cover sure fire techniques to improve your Corporate Image. But please bear in mind that the hardware will always be the prime and foremost aspect of your growth.  article written by Junaid.Tahir

Well, let us understand first why you should give importance to your official image?

 

Why Personal branding is important?

In your routine official life, you are being observed by your team lead, managers and/or senior managers on how you work, behave, speak, act, react, meet, greet, resolve and so on. All these observations are contributing towards your overall image. This image analysis is being done by the management for everyone. So when it comes to new opportunity or project in the department, it will be awarded to the one having good professional or corporate image.

 

Here are the things which you need to work on to promote your corporate image:

 

1-THINK BIG:

It all starts from your brain. Good Mind Good Find. It is as simple as that. Focusing on your thoughts will give maturity to your speech and actions which consequently would result in great personality. If you think you should only work on the physical appearance factor of your personality by looking nice through branded coats, pants and other accessories; it is going to result in a disaster since it will be equivalent to a bitter toffee in a nice wrap. Once the wrap is removed, the toffee is going to give a bad taste anyway.  You may want to read my article http://paradigmwisdom.blogspot.com/2012/01/need-success-work-on-your-thoughts.html which addresses the issue in detail.

 

2-WORK BIG:

Try to get engaged in more and more projects. If you really want to do task you will find a way to do it, if you don't, you will find an excuse so grab more tasks; off course not at the cost of your family life. Try to meet expectation as much as possible. Done go to your boss with a problem without  solution. Develop skills such as problem solving, analytical Skills and creativity. Be efficient, confident, sharp, dynamic in your day to day life. article written by Junaid.Tahir

 

 

3-TALK BIG:

Be socially active, do not skip meetings. Try to give your positive and optimistic opinion as much as you can.  Say hello to everyone. Be enthusiastic, humorous and friendly. Do not miss any telephone calls.  Avoid reacting.  Treating everyone with equal respect, Avoid irritating & negative comments. Build a vocabulary of positive words. Use and practice these again and again. Develop effective communications skills.

 

 

4-LOOK BIG:

Physical appearance matters a lot. Whether you are sitting in a meeting or walking in office or just working from your chair, you need to look confident. Your posture should portray your confident personality. When you are meeting with someone, try to work on your First Impression. Ask yourself whether the person is going to call you a Decent chap? Rough? Polite? Nice or what?.  Your way of handshaking, standing/sitting, smiling, eye contact, shoes, dressing, voice, physical fitness, remembering names matter a lot. Do you have old suits in your wardrobe? Get rid of them. Do you have old hair style for some time? Change it. Do you use same colors of clothes? Buy new. Do you talk too quietly or too loudly? Change your tone. article written by Junaid.Tahir. Remember, you dont need to be in high end tuxedo for great impression, you can acheive the same by haivng a simple life style.

 

 

5-BEHAVE BIG:

Live an ethical life . Your personality should reminder others as a confident, honest, friendly, organized, creative, trust worthy and decent but mature person. Help others whenever it is required. Seek first to understand then to be understood. Don't impose your decisions on someone. Listen emphatically. Listen more and speak less. article written by Junaid.Tahir

 

 

Conclusion:

Hard work is definitely the key to success however you need to work on several aspects of your personality to move on your professional ladder. Always remember that consistency in your actions is critically important. Your inconsistence behavior is an indication of your non-predictive personality due to which people won't trust you. If you would like to develop trust please read my articlehttp://paradigmwisdom.blogspot.com/2012/02/how-to-build-trust-to-empower-relations.html

 


Junaid Tahir 
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Optimizing Business Costs



Business costs are sub-classified into two categories; Fixed Costs and Variable Costs.


Fixed costs are defined as the expenses which do not change as a function of business such as salaries of employees, rents of the office, facilities and equipment costs. However, please don't get confused that Fixed Costs cannot be changed. Indeed they can be changed but their prime definition remains the same that these costs are stable for longer duration of time and do not usually get impacted due to on-going business volume. On the contrary, the Variable Costs are the ones which keep changing due to multiple factors.

Below is the list of several domains and recommendations (minor tweak for SMEs and major ones for large scale companies) in the form of questions in order to give you a personalized experience and to invoke the thought process for the business cost reduction:

 

1-  Marketing, Advertising and Business Development:

i-             How much budget was utilized for marketing  in last 6 months? How much the marketing has been effective? Is there any need to re-evaluate the marketing strategy?

ii-            How much investment is done on customer's entertainment?

iii-          Do you do a monthly expense analysis audit? Do you know specific techniques to optimize your marketing budget such as AdSense, affiliate marketing etc?

iv-           Do you consider B2B marketing, email marketing, banner advertisement, pay per click, video marketing or SEO optimization?  

 

2-  Leasing and Rental Management:

i-             Does the company's office and warehouse at different locations? Why not having both at same location to reduce renting and transportation costs?

ii-            Any recent audit done to determine if the current rented space for office or warehouse is worth its expenses? Is the size and cost in sync with the requirements of business? Can this be moved to a less costly area?

iii-          Is there any tools, machinery or other resources which can be leased to earn some extra cash? Any marketing plans to do this?

 

3-  Staff Management and Optimization

i-             Are there any underutilized employees? Can some extra tasks given to these employees to make them more productive or 'earning' resources?

ii-            Can some of the permanent staff be converted to contract based? This will save extra benefit and reduce your long term liabilities.

iii-          Can some of the tasks/ resources be outsourced? (HR services, Visa, documentation, maintenance etc.)

iv-           Did any re-evaluation of resource responsibilities happened in last one years? Are there any employees with duplicate roles?

v-            Company sponsored mobile phone packages are fairly used? The packages are carefully selected based on the role of each employee? Any audit happened for the utilization of mobile and other resources given to employees?

vi-           Are the employees trained enough to perform their duties so that they make less errors and mistakes?

vii-         Right policies are in place so as to reduce the reworks? What is the accountability mechanism?

viii-        Mature and error free databases are in place for efficient and accurate reports generation and to avoid errors in data entry?

ix-          Is there any scheme available through which employees are given suggestions for the improvement of organizations and get rewarded if their suggestions are implemented?

x-           Any specialised use of tracking employee online activities such as Manic Time?

xi-          Employee lay off should be last thing to do as it impacts your organization in many ways such as loss of sincerity, productivity and efficiency of the rest of the employees.

 

 

 

4-  Vehicle Utilization and Fuel Management:

i)             How vehicles are utilized in a day to day work? How much company is flexible for the utilization for personal use?

ii)            How vehicles are maintained?  Is this task given to any agency to avoid corruption and in order to enjoy free benefits  such as car replacements ,free wash, oil, and tuning services?

iii)          How vehicles are tracked for the daily utilization (how many kilo meters travelled, how could multiple visits or same kind of visits be reduced?

iv)           Pick and drop of employee is happening on bulk basis or at individual level?

v)            Restriction of some of the travel (local and abroad) possible?

 

5-  Energy Conservation 

i)             Motion detection Sensors installed for turning lights off during off hours?

ii)            Sleep mode enabled on laptop computers?

iii)          Older bulbs/fans/computers are still being utilized which are poor when it comes to energy efficient devices selection?

Written by Junaid Tahir.

 

6-  Hard Resources Utilization and Audit

i-             How many printers & Scanners are in place? Can we reduce some of them?

ii-            How many pages are printed per day? Any mechanism to control it?

iii-          Is there any over utilization of pantry products? Employees are encouraged to use non-recyclable things?

iv-           Which of the policies and processes can be converted to paperless by avoiding photocopying/ printing/ reproducing ? Can you run a paperless company altogether?

v-            Is there any strong mechanism of inventory management? Any products lost because of poor control on hardware resources ?

 

With these recommendations, I believe any company can optimize their business costs consequently improve their profit margins.

How to you optimize the costs in your organization?

\

Written by Junaid Tahir

 

Key Features of Effective Documentation Management System



By Junaid Tahir

I have observed in several organizations I interact with that respective management overlook one of the critical aspects of management that how their employees are managing data and how employees are performing day to day activities logging. I have observed that instead of centralized data management, each individual updates his/her own self-created excel file with poor formatting which prevents him for any kind of collaboration, version control, or advanced report generation. The issue becomes more prominent when the data becomes bigger and bigger over the course of time. Due to disorganized data management approach, the managers of these companies are under consistent crisis. This is where Documentation Management System plays vital role.  So let's understand this in more detail:

document management system (DMS) is a controlled system used to track and store electronic documents, records and other activities of the organization. It is usually also capable of keeping track of the different versions modified by different users (history tracking).


Why Documentation Quality is important:

o             Correct, Complete, Current and Consistent Information is critical to business success.
o             Team Collaboration so that all teams can work in sync with each other.
o             Reference for Management: Sr Managers can see high level reports at any point.
o             Error Reduction: Multiple people can identify possible typo mistakes.
o             Risk Identification. High End Analysis with support of Micro Level Records.
o             Seamless handover to new team or when any employee goes on vacation.

Key Features of DMS:

o             Always up-to-date: All team members to keep it up-to-date to ensure fresh data.
o             Transparent & Clear.
o             Professional Naming Convention to identify the purpose of the database/document.
o             Version Control (Approve, Review and Update Control
o             Dynamic Summary Generation (General & Specific Reporting)
o             Symmetric & Uniform (All teams should follow same pattern/format) for off-line
o             Automatic Work Flow.
o             Control on Multiple Record.
o             Control on Missing Record (Base Line Reference)
o             Change Control (What was changed, when, why, how and by whom?)
o             Risk Management Report Automation (Risk Assessment and Risk Control) – Automatic Pivots and graphs to highlight critical risks, delayed milestones etc.

With these points I believe you can develop a concrete database management system for your organization. If you would like to seek advice, feel free to drop me a line and I shall be glad to help you with J

Some articles you may like:


About Author: Junaid Tahir is a passionate blogger. He writes articles on Leadership, Stress Management and Life Enhancement subjects at his personal blog DailyTenMinutes


Health: 25 Uses for Olive Oil


Olive oil is one of the most popular ingredients in the kitchen, but it can also be found in the medicine cabinet and even on a night stand. The fact that it is rich in vitamin E and essential antioxidants, makes it one of the most efficient measures to balance blood pressure levels and cholesterol, to prevent heart attacks, cancer and fight aging. And if you thought that's where its benefits end, you are sorely mistaken...
 
 
Here are 25 more uses for this excellent material, the olive oil!
 
1. To prevent snoring - Swallow a spoon of olive oil before bed.
 
2. To reduce stretch marks - Massage olive oil on your skin.
 
3. To treat acne - prepare a mix made of 3 table spoons of olive oil with 4 table spoons of sea salt, and put on your face for 1-2 minutes. The mix will clean the pores and keep the moisture of your skin. Wash with hot water and soap.
 
4. To alleviate ear pain - Spill one drop of warm olive oil in your ear.
 
5. To reduce stomach ulcers and pain - Mix one table spoon of olive oil with a 3/4 cup of citrus juice or vinegar and drink.
 
6. Olive oil can serve as a substitute for shaving cream.
 
7. To strengthen your fingernails - Soak them in a bowl with olive oil.
 
8. To rehabilitate your skin - To treat dry skin of the hands, elbows and knees, warm a few table spoons of olive oil (until it's luke-warm) and smear on the relevant areas. 
 
9. To treat colds - Warm a mixture of 1/3 cup of olive oil, 1/3 cup of sesame oil, 4 drops of thyme, 2 drops of rosemary oil and massage the warm mixture on the chest area.
 
10. To treat dandruff - Massage olive oil into your scalp and leave overnight. Wash your hair in the morning and wash with a regular shampoo. Try this treatment for a week.
 
11. To treat dry hair with split ends - Warm olive oil and smear on the scalp for 45 minutes.
 
12. To treat after hair coloring - Soak a soft cotton towel with olive oil and wipe the spotted skin, it may take some time but the color will come off the skin.
 
13. To prevent hair loss - Mix 2 eggs with 2 table spoons of olive oil. Smear on the scalp and hair for 40 minutes and then wash with cool or luke-warm water. It's recommended to repeat this 3 times a week. 
 
14. To treat lice - Mix one table spoon of olive oil with 5 drops of the tea tree oil, and smear on the scalp for several minutes. Then comb your hair with a lice comb and wash with hot water.
 
15. Relieve toothache - Mix drops of clove oil with drops of olive oil, in about a ratio of 3:1, and use a cotton ball to put on the aching area. Not recommended for children and pregnant or breastfeeding women.
 
16. Remove Mascara - Drip a bit of olive oil on a cotton ball and wipe the makeup from your eyes.
 
17. Relieve Coughing - Swallow a spoon of olive oil mixed with a spoon of honey. Another option is to massage the upper back and chest with olive oil at body temperature.
 
18. Treating swollen / red gums - Wash your mouth with a mix of olive oil and water. 
 
19. Prevent diaper rash - Mix 2 spoons of olive oil with a spoon of water and smear on the baby's rear.
 
20. To polish furniture - Mix olive oil and lemon juice at a ratio of 2:1. Use a gentle towel soaked in the mix to polish the furniture.
 
21.To maintain garden tools - Smear a bit of olive oil on garden tools to keep them from accumulating filth and corrosion. 
 
22. To prevent squeaks - Smear some olive oil on screaming hinges to make them silet.
 
23. For digestive problems - Swallow a spoon of olive oil every morning on an empty stomach. Another option is to drink a glass of water with a spoon of olive oil and a spoon of lemon juice.
 
24. To maintain knives - After washing thoroughly with water and soap, wipe the blades well and then use a small amount of olive oil and gentle rub it on the blades with a towel.
 
25. Prevent wax from building up in the candlesticks - just drip a bit of olive oil and it won't stick.

Junaid Tahir 
www.DailyTenMinutes.com

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Personal Goal Setting


Planning to Live Your Life Your Way


Many people feel as if they're adrift in the world. They work hard, but they don't seem to get anywhere worthwhile 
A key reason that they feel this way is that they haven't spent enough time thinking about what they want from life, and haven't set themselves formal goals. After all, would you set out on a major journey with no real idea of your destination? Probably not!.

Goal setting is a powerful process for thinking about your ideal future, and for motivating yourself to turn your vision of this future into reality.

The process of setting goals helps you choose where you want to go in life. By knowing precisely what you want to achieve, you know where you have to concentrate your efforts. You'll also quickly spot the distractions that can, so easily, lead you astray.

Why Set Goals?

Goal setting is used by top-level athletes, successful business-people and achievers in all fields. Setting goals gives you long-term vision and short-term motivation  . It focuses your acquisition of knowledge, and helps you to organize your time and your resources so that you can make the very most of your life.

By setting sharp, clearly defined goals, you can measure and take pride in the achievement of those goals, and you'll see forward progress in what might previously have seemed a long pointless grind. You will also raise your self-confidence  , as you recognize your own ability and competence in achieving the goals that you've set.

Starting to Set Personal Goals

You set your goals on a number of levels:

  • First you create your "big picture" of what you want to do with your life (or over, say, the next 10 years), and identify the large-scale goals that you want to achieve.
  • Then, you break these down into the smaller and smaller targets that you must hit to reach your lifetime goals.
  • Finally, once you have your plan, you start working on it to achieve these goals.

This is why we start the process of goal setting by looking at your lifetime goals. Then, we work down to the things that you can do in, say, the next five years, then next year, next month, next week, and today, to start moving towards them.

Step 1: Setting Lifetime Goals

The first step in setting personal goals is to consider what you want to achieve in your lifetime (or at least, by a significant and distant age in the future). Setting lifetime goals gives you the overall perspective that shapes all other aspects of your decision making.

To give a broad, balanced coverage of all important areas in your life, try to set goals in some of the following categories (or in other categories of your own, where these are important to you):

  • Career – What level do you want to reach in your career, or what do you want to achieve?
  • Financial – How much do you want to earn, by what stage? How is this related to your career goals?
  • Education – Is there any knowledge you want to acquire in particular? What information and skills will you need to have in order to achieve other goals?
  • Family – Do you want to be a parent? If so, how are you going to be a good parent? How do you want to be seen by a partner or by members of your extended family?
  • Artistic – Do you want to achieve any artistic goals?
  • Attitude – Is any part of your mindset holding you back? Is there any part of the way that you behave that upsets you? (If so, set a goal to improve your behavior or find a solution to the problem.)
  • Physical – Are there any athletic goals that you want to achieve, or do you want good health deep into old age? What steps are you going to take to achieve this?
  • Pleasure – How do you want to enjoy yourself? (You should ensure that some of your life is for you!)
  • Public Service – Do you want to make the world a better place? If so, how?

Spend some time brainstorming   these things, and then select one or more goals in each category that best reflect what you want to do. Then consider trimming again so that you have a small number of really significant goals that you can focus on.

As you do this, make sure that the goals that you have set are ones that you genuinely want to achieve, not ones that your parents, family, or employers might want. (If you have a partner, you probably want to consider what he or she wants – however, make sure that you also remain true to yourself!)

Tip:

You may also want to read our article on Personal Mission Statements  . Crafting a personal mission statement can help bring your most important goals into sharp focus.

Step 2: Setting Smaller Goals

Once you have set your lifetime goals, set a five-year plan of smaller goals that you need to complete if you are to reach your lifetime plan.

Then create a one-year plan, six-month plan, and a one-month plan of progressively smaller goals that you should reach to achieve your lifetime goals. Each of these should be based on the previous plan.

Then create a daily To-Do List   of things that you should do today to work towards your lifetime goals.

At an early stage, your smaller goals might be to read books and gather information on the achievement of your higher level goals. This will help you to improve the quality and realism of your goal setting.

Finally review your plans, and make sure that they fit the way in which you want to live your life.

Tip:

If you feel that you're not paying enough attention to certain areas of your life, you'll find our articles on The Wheel of Life   and the Life/Career Rainbow   useful.

Staying on Course

Once you've decided on your first set of goals, keep the process going by reviewing and updating your To-Do List on a daily basis.

Periodically review the longer term plans, and modify them to reflect your changing priorities and experience. (A good way of doing this is to schedule regular, repeating reviews using a computer-based diary.)

SMART Goals

A useful way of making goals more powerful is to use the SMART mnemonic. While there are plenty of variants (some of which we've included in parenthesis), SMART usually stands for:

  • S – Specific (or Significant).
  • M – Measurable (or Meaningful).
  • A – Attainable (or Action-Oriented).
  • R – Relevant (or Rewarding).
  • T – Time-bound (or Trackable).

For example, instead of having "to sail around the world" as a goal, it's more powerful to say "To have completed my trip around the world by December 31, 2015." Obviously, this will only be attainable if a lot of preparation has been completed beforehand!

Further Goal Setting Tips

The following broad guidelines will help you to set effective, achievable goals:

  • State each goal as a positive statement – Express your goals positively – "Execute this technique well" is a much better goal than "Don't make this stupid mistake."
  • Be precise: Set precise goals, putting in dates, times and amounts so that you can measure achievement. If you do this, you'll know exactly when you have achieved the goal, and can take complete satisfaction from having achieved it.
  • Set priorities – When you have several goals, give each a priority. This helps you to avoid feeling overwhelmed by having too many goals, and helps to direct your attention to the most important ones.
  • Write goals down – This crystallizes them and gives them more force.
  • Keep operational goals small – Keep the low-level goals that you're working towards small and achievable. If a goal is too large, then it can seem that you are not making progress towards it. Keeping goals small and incremental gives more opportunities for reward.
  • Set performance goals, not outcome goals – You should take care to set goals over which you have as much control as possible. It can be quite dispiriting to fail to achieve a personal goal for reasons beyond your control!

    In business, these reasons could be bad business environments or unexpected effects of government policy. In sport, they could include poor judging, bad weather, injury, or just plain bad luck.

    If you base your goals on personal performance, then you can keep control over the achievement of your goals, and draw satisfaction from them.

  • Set realistic goals – It's important to set goals that you can achieve. All sorts of people (for example, employers, parents, media, or society) can set unrealistic goals for you. They will often do this in ignorance of your own desires and ambitions.

    It's also possible to set goals that are too difficult because you might not appreciate either the obstacles in the way, or understand quite how much skill you need to develop to achieve a particular level of performance.

Achieving Goals

When you've achieved a goal, take the time to enjoy the satisfaction of having done so. Absorb the implications of the goal achievement, and observe the progress that you've made towards other goals.

If the goal was a significant one, reward yourself appropriately. All of this helps you build the self-confidence you deserve.

With the experience of having achieved this goal, review the rest of your goal plans:

  • If you achieved the goal too easily, make your next goal harder.
  • If the goal took a dispiriting length of time to achieve, make the next goal a little easier.
  • If you learned something that would lead you to change other goals, do so.
  • If you noticed a deficit in your skills despite achieving the goal, decide whether to set goals to fix this.

Tip 1:

Our article, Golden Rules of Goal Setting  , will show you how to set yourself up for success when it comes to your goals. If you're still having trouble, you might also want to try Backward Goal Setting  .

Tip 2:

It's important to remember that failing to meet goals does not matter much, just as long as you learn from the experience.

Feed lessons learned back into your goal setting. Remember too that your goals will change as time goes on. Adjust them regularly to reflect growth in your knowledge and experience, and if goals do not hold any attraction any longer, consider letting them go.

Goal Setting Example

For her New Year's Resolution, Susan has decided to think about what she really wants to do with her life.

Her lifetime goals are as follows:

  • Career – "To be managing editor of the magazine that I work for."
  • Artistic – "To keep working on my illustration skills. Ultimately I want to have my own show in our downtown gallery."
  • Physical – "To run a marathon."

Now that Susan has listed her lifetime goals, she then breaks down each one into smaller, more manageable goals.

Let's take a closer look at how she might break down her lifetime career goal – becoming managing editor of her magazine:

  • Five-year goal: "Become deputy editor."
  • One-year goal: "Volunteer for projects that the current Managing Editor is heading up."
  • Six-month goal: "Go back to school and finish my journalism degree."
  • One-month goal: "Talk to the current managing editor to determine what skills are needed to do the job."
  • One-week goal: "Book the meeting with the Managing Editor."

As you can see from this example, breaking big goals down into smaller, more manageable goals makes it far easier to see how the goal will get accomplished.

Tip:

A good way of getting going with this is to use the Mind Tools Life Plan Workbook. Supported by worksheets and advice, this guides you through a simple 5-step process for setting your life goals, and for organizing yourself for success.

Key Points

Goal setting is an important method of:

  • Deciding what you want to achieve in your life.
  • Separating what's important from what's irrelevant, or a distraction.
  • Motivating yourself.
  • Building your self-confidence, based on successful achievement of goals.

Set your lifetime goals first. Then, set a five-year plan of smaller goals that you need to complete if you are to reach your lifetime plan. Keep the process going by regularly reviewing and updating your goals. And remember to take time to enjoy the satisfaction of achieving your goals when you do so.

If you don't already set goals, do so, starting now. As you make this technique part of your life, you'll find your career accelerating, and you'll wonder how you did without it!

Junaid Tahir 
www.DailyTenMinutes.com

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