Set a Goal to Set Some Goals

Practice shooting

       A person who wants to become more productive in sports and life would be wise to use the motivational powers of goal setting.  While a goal is something we may be trying to obtain, setting the goal is the first action that needs to be considered.

       There are many worthwhile goals in sports as well as in life.  Why and how these goals are established can make all the difference in obtaining success.  A specific goal is much easier to work towards than a general goal.  By breaking the general goal down into parts, the athlete can work on one specific concept at a time and really focus on it.  For instance, working to become a better shooter is a more specific goal than just aiming to become a better basketball player.  Developing a consistent jump shot off of the drive is even more specific than just becoming a better shooter.

       Writing the goal down on a post-it note serves as a daily, visual reminder of the specific goal.  The note should be placed where an athlete will see it everyday, such as on a bathroom mirror, a bedroom door, or the refrigerator.  A constant reminder helps keep the athlete focused and motivated to obtain the goal.

       An attainable goal is also an important consideration.  If the goal is unattainable or close to impossible to accomplish, the athlete will soon give up and lose interest in the goal.  Make goals that are reasonably attainable and then reestablish new goals when the original ones are met.  That way, success at reaching one goal will serve as motivation for setting and reaching more difficult goals. As an example, a basketball player might want to become one of the best in his league.  First, he will need to become the best on his own team.  Maybe that will require a better shooting percentage.  An attainable goal for the immediate future might be to shoot 200 shots a day and log the percentage made.  As he accomplishes a “higher percentage” goal, he should score more points per shot taken, gain the respect of his coach and teammates, and eventually become one of the better players on his team.  With this progression, he will have a better chance of becoming one of the best in the league.

        Attainable goals and specific goals are two important considerations when an athlete is trying to improve in a sport.  Be specific with what you want to accomplish and make sure you have a reasonable goal to pursue.  The key is to set a goal, then work as hard as you can to accomplish it.  Whether you want to became a better athlete, a better coach, or even just a better person, start today and “Set a Goal to Set Some Goals.”

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