Part 3 | Six Reasons Why Having Goals Works 

img_0649October 3, 2016

Reason #3: Goals Create Structure

No one is going to force us to be great.  And, in that way, choosing to grow and evolve is a choice.  It won’t just happen.

Importantly, choosing to make changes is a choice that is different from, say, choosing to driving on someone’s lawn, stealing from the store, or not paying our taxes.  Eventually, someone will force us to stop doing them.  There are guides in place, which restrict and limit these behaviors—usually, they are called laws.

In our minds, we tell ourselves that this is for the benefit of all.  Meaning, if folks could drive wherever they pleased, take what they wanted, or refuse to pay their dues—it would negatively affect us all.

But what about the opposite?  Where are the guides and rules that encourage us to be rockstars in life and truly make a positive difference in the lives of others and our communities?

So many rules are put in place to limit “bad” behavior.  Where are the rules that encourage “good” behavior?

One answer might be this: goals.

Having a goal provides a structure around our pursuit of personal greatness.  Goals and each step required to achieve them function as guides to greatness.  Goals encourage good actions and, in the face of hopelessness, they promote pro-activity.

It’s like grocery shopping without a list.  We’re more likely wander the aisles, overspend, and simultaneously leave the store without the things we actually needed. 

When we have a goal we have a “shopping list”.  That is, we have a reason for doing the things that we are doing.   

After all, the road to success will be lined with many tempting parking spaces.  Goals remind us of the route that we have chosen to take toward the destination that we’ve decided upon.

Action: Create the “shopping list” for your life.  Instead of populating the list with apples, dish soap, and whole wheat, include elements and activities that you want to be doing every day/week/year.  It can serve as an easy reference list for moments when you feel lost, stuck, or in a rut.  It’s something to refer back to time after time over the years as you reach your goals.

Be your greatness. Start. Do. Go.

Circle Photo

Zach Carlsen is the grateful lead blogger at

His strengths of Ideation, Connectedness, Input, Strategic, and Empathy have taken him all over the world.  He is an inventor, athlete, joyous wanderer/wonderer, translator, poet, and Gallup Certified Strengths Coach.


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