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Goals - how big or small should you go?

I want to talk about goals today because we all should have them, yet most people go about their daily lives thinking they have them, but not actually making any effort or not knowing how to achieve them.

You must be thinking - what is she on about? Now, before you turn away from this page, I'll proceed to explain further.

We are all great at making goals. How do I know that?

Remember that never ending to do list you started last week but haven’t really gotten around to? I’m very much guilty of that too.

Those, my friend, were little goals written on a piece of paper, waiting for someone to take action.

But first of all, we need to make one thing clear.

Sometimes, we make such a big 'to do list' and don't realise what we are actually trying to achieve is not considered “goals” but mistaken as our “daily routine”. You see, most humans like the sense of satisfaction when they accomplish something and when you complete your daily routine, it feels as though you have achieved something in your day. But those unfortunately, are not goals. They are built-in habits.

Now, back to actual goals, e.g. learning to play the guitar, writing a book. Most of the time, we don't complete these goals because they are either too big to tackle in one shot or it's not important enough that we just procrastinate and do something else instead.

So we need to learn to break down bigger goals into smaller steps so that when we complete those small little steps, we will eventually achieve that bigger goal.

Take learning how to play the guitar for example, your goal is 'to be able to play the guitar' but what you should have on your to do list should be 'learn to play 4 chords today'. See how I've just broken down playing guitar into a simple step?

If you apply this in anything you do or learn, no goal is ever too big nor small,.

Just remember, having it too big and not breaking it down to little steps might lead you to not making any action at all. So take some time to analyse your goals, and then work your way up the ladder.

Josh Kaufman did a great talk on learning anything within 20 hours, you can watch his video here.


Olivia Ting is an in-house telehealth physiotherapist at Travel Physio. When she's not writing or treating clients for Travel Physio, you'll probably find her chasing sunrises or sunsets on a beautiful mountain somewhere.

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