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How To Set Goals That Support Your Life Purpose

How To Set Goals That Support Your Life Purpose

Let’s face it: discovering and tapping into your life purpose is your sole responsibility. In the same breath, setting goals that align with your purpose is your obligation. That’s why you need to know how to set goals for yourself.

Finding your life purpose isn’t always easy. Matter of fact: some people spend their entire lifetime trying to discover their purpose

If you already know how to discover your mission, great; if not, the first step to accomplish this is to know your values, personality, strengths, talents, and interests. Once you know these, identify what you want in different areas, including relationships, career, fitness, education, and finances. Next, write it down.

Your goals and dreams should therefore align with your life purpose.

Disclaimer : The information provided in this site is for educational purposes only, and it is not a substitue for professional advice. The article may contain affiliate links. See the full disclaimer for more details.

Why Set Goals for Yourself?

Here are the top reasons to set your life goals:

Take Charge of Your Life

When you lack goals, you’ll keep running up and down throughout your life and not achieve anything significant. But when you finally start setting goals and decide what you want, you dissociate from the autopilot and live a life you want. 

Instead of letting other people tell you what to do, you take charge and start thinking about yourself and what you want.

Creates Laser Focus

Without goals, your efforts will be confusing and disjointed. 

Research has it that 80% of people fail to set their own goals. But, having your personal goals in place can always help you stay on course with purpose and bring you close to achieving it every day.

Measure Progress

Setting goals helps us keep track of progress in life. Goals tell us where we’ve been, how far we’ve come, and how much further we need to go. They’re how we measure our success.

Source of Motivation

It’s easy to put off tasks until tomorrow when you have no goal in place.

Let’s take athletes, for example. If they have to stay in shape for a world championship, you better believe they’ll practice every day whether tired or not, whether they feel like it or not, and whether their bodies ache or not.

Reason? Because they have a goal – a destination. In the same vein, having a goal will motivate you to work and achieve it.

Setting Goals

When you discover your purpose, you need to start asking yourself, “What kind of goals do I need to set to achieve my purpose?” 

The  3 Levels of Setting Personal Goals

Goal setting takes place at three primary levels: 

  • Create a big picture of what you want to achieve in your life, or say 15 years. The big picture gives you a general idea of the things you need to link yourself to or, in other words, the path you need to take.
  • Break down the long-term goal into small targets that you can start working on one by one as you reach your life’s purpose
  • Once you plan it all out, start working on achieving the goals.

Let’s look at these levels in more detail:

1. Set Lifetime Goals

Set Lifetime Goals

To set personal goals, start by considering what you’d like to achieve in a lifetime (or in several years to come). Setting a lifetime goal provides you with a general perspective that influences every aspect of your decision-making.

To shed light on the essential areas of your life, here are the major categories to set goals in:

  • Career – What level would you like to attain career-wise? For example, If you intend to be a university lecturer, do you want to end up as a professor or head of a department?
  • Financial – How much money would you like to make, and at what stage? Will this amount help you drive your fancy car, live in your dream house, and the location of your dreams?
  • Education – What’s the highest level of education you’d wish to achieve in life? Will this stage give you an upper hand to pursue your dream career?
  • Family – Are you planning to be a parent? What type of parent would you like your children to have. How would you like your partner and inlaws to envision you?
  • Health and fitness – What’s your long-term fitness goal? To lose weight, gain muscle, or maintain your current frame? What types of workouts and diet do you need to hit these goals?
  • Attitude – Is a part of your mindset holding you back? Is there any behavior you possess that you think annoys you and others? If so, it’s time to create a goal to correct the behavior or get a solution to a specific problem.
  • Artistic – Do you possess any artistic talents that need nurturing? Are you passionate about writing, painting, playing a guitar, drawing, painting, public speaking, or woodworking? If so, what training and resources do you need to nurture your talent? Plus, how best would you like to exploit the artistic talent once you master it?
  • Public service – Would you like to make this world a better place? If yes, in what way(s)?

Take the time to brainstorm on these aspects and select one or two goals per category that best illustrate what you’d like to become.

It doesn’t end there.

Trim the list further to only remain with a small number of crucial goals you genuinely intend to pursue and achieve.

2. Set Smaller Goals

These are the goals that you aim to accomplish quickly. They could range from the daily, weekly, or even yearly activities you carry out.

To accomplish these goals is by creating to-do lists and setting deadlines. These deadlines are to be used as markers to successfully achieve our targets within the shortest time possible.

The main point of such goals is to help you achieve the quick things you want in life. It could be that you are aiming to improve your grades at school. Or even getting better job positions so that you may get to the right path of finding your purpose.
Of course, we all start with small steps before we learn to run.

3. Achieving the Goals

Knowing how to set goals for yourself is one thing and achieving them is another.

There are required actions to help boost your chances of achieving those targets.

1) Review your goal regularly- Be sure to review your goals at least twice a week. The review will help you redefine them as you see fit.

2) Find a partner – It’s always better to have someone with you in everything we do for accountability purposes. It could be your study partner, business partner, spouse, or even a close friend.

3) Create a reward – To encourage yourself to keep going, create a reward. A reward will motivate and encourage you to stay on course with your targets.

4) Do the work and don’t worry about the outcome – Sometimes, we need to remember that we don’t always get what we wish for in this world. But, we do get what we work for. 

So my advice to you is to stay focused on the goals you want to achieve rather than the rewards you wish to get after achieving those goals.

How to Keep Track and Assess Your Goals’ Status

Keeping track of your goals and the status of your progress towards them can be a challenge, but there’s no reason you should have to remember it all in your head.

Record your goals and milestones on index cards and place them somewhere where you’ll see them; by your bedside table or taped to the back of the bathroom mirror are both familiar places. Update the cards as you progress towards your milestones.

Make sure to note down what you’ve done for each milestone on the card. Writing down serves both as a record of your achievement and motivation for keeping up the good work since it’s easy to see how far you’ve come if you glance at your accomplishment cards now and then.

Set SMART Goals

Set Smart Goals

An easy way to make goals more powerful is to follow the SMART acronym. SMART stands for:

S- Specific

Specific goals mean setting clear and precise goals so that you don’t get lost or get overwhelmed.  Setting specific goals also makes it easy to follow through and achieve them. 

Bad example: I want to start a business in the future

Good example: I want to start an affiliate marketing business in the gaming niche in six months.

M- Measurable

In this step, you need to determine if your goals are achievable. Determining your goal’s measurability is a crucial step as it will help you determine the path you need to follow.


I want to improve my math grade this semester (non-measurable).

This semester, I want to score a B and above in the MAT 101 course (measurable).

A- Achievable 

What this means is that your goals should be attainable rather than unrealistic.


I will write a novel of 50,000 words this month (non-achievable)

I want to write 2,500 words per week (achievable)

R- Relevant

That is, having goals relevant to your purpose. When setting up your goal, always keep in mind why you are doing what you are doing because that will be very important for us to succeed.

Bad example: I want to earn money through the stock market (yet you hate finance)

Good example: I want to earn a side income as a personal trainer (you like working out at the gym)

T- Time-bound

The main point of setting a deadline or time limit for your goals is to put additional pressure on yourself to do all that needs to be done before said deadline. The deadline could either push you down or inspire you to do better.

Bad example: I would like to submit a short story to the next month’s context

Good example: I will create an outline for my short story this Thursday

Setting SMART goals will propel you to achieve all you want. It can either turn into your friend or your enemy, so try to see it as the former and not the latter.

Further Tips on How to Set Goals for Yourself

When setting life goals, how long do you think it would take to achieve them? Can you see how much time you require to reach that point where the big picture starts shaping up?

You should set goals for different areas of your life up to this point. Here are additional tips to make the process easier for you:

1. Create A List

Create a list of all the goals you aim to achieve. Both long term and short-term, have them ranked up starting from the most important once that you feel they will support your purpose. It is also essential to set realistic goals that you know you can achieve. 

When setting your goals, there are specific questions you need to ask yourself and see whether they will bring exposure to your purpose.

Such questions include:

  • What kind of relationship do you wish to have in your life?
  • Do you have any places you’d like to visit?
  • Where would you like to stay
  • What kind of friends do you want?
  • What character would you like to develop?
  • What is your spiritual life like?
  • Do you have a dream house or car?

These are just some of the questions you would ask if you wonder how to set goals for yourself.

2. Choose The Top 5

Once you’ve ranked them up, choose the top five and focus on them. Analyze everything you need to do to accomplish the goal as you do this. 

You can start planning and point out the resources needed to achieve every goal. It would be best to have a general scope of achieving your goals.

3. Seek Advice

You can seek advice from your family, friend, or partner, someone you’re sure can help you achieve this goal. However, you should be careful with whom you choose to share such personal information.

4. Timing

Find a good time to start working on the goals. Schedule your time more appropriately so it doesn’t collide with your regular day-to-day activity.

You don’t have to completely kill your social life or the fun you might have to achieve your goals. You can always allocate some time for this.

5. Assessment

Start the journey towards your goals and see how it goes. Be motivated along how you go and assess how you are doing.

Plan how you can adjust your goals if anything goes wrong or how you can overcome them even when they are obstacles.

Wrap up

Learning how to set goals for yourself gives you complete control over your life. Goals are an effective way to tap into your purpose in life. Be sure to set goals in significant areas, such as education, relationships, finance, family, and career. Follow the tips above and write the goals down using the SMART approach.

Most importantly, write your goals down and track them to ensure you follow through. Talk to someone trustworthy about it to help you stay on course.

Remember, it’s the small daily actions that count. That said, ensure every task you do daily pushes you closer to your life goals. And that boils down to how you spend every minute of the day.

Happy goal setting and fun in achieving them, buddy!

If you want to get a deeper look into the “why” behind your goals and refine them further, then try out these self-discovery practices.