Some goals are easier to measure than others. Measuring goals such as weight loss or weight lifting can be easy, as there are numerical values attached to these goals. But what about intangible goals like starting your own business or improving your quality of life? These goals are difficult to quantify and progress can be measured in multiple different ways. It can get frustrating and overwhelming when we try to find a metric to quantify these intangible goals.
So how do we measure these types of goals? How do we know if we are progressing? In order to quantify these things, we need to develop our own measuring system that helps us see progress for our goals.
Take a goal like improving your quality of life for example. A goal like that isn't a goal that you can just do. It's incredibly broad and can be achieved through multiple ways. This is known as an outcome goal.
The steps you need to take in order to achieve the outcome goal, like improving your relationships, finances, or getting more sleep for the example above are known as the process goals.
By breaking down outcome goals into process goals, we can make our goals more tangible and digestible, making it easier to know where to put our effort into.
Time is a universal unit that we can all use to measure our progress. We can use time in many ways to help keep ourselves on track, whether it be setting deadlines or using it as a measurement on how long we spend pursuing our goal.
For example, if my goal was to improve my French, I can allocate an hour each day to reading a book teaching me about the language.
While time is a great unit of measurement to help keep yourself on track, it's not always the best measurement you can use.
Using the example I used earlier, if my goal was to improve my French, reading an hour once a day may not be the most efficient choice. Perhaps I get too distracted in the middle of reading or the information is not sticking. Rather than using the same unit of measurement, it may be more efficient to track how much sentences I can decipher instead.
When figuring out the best measurable unit for your goal, you need to take personal considerations into account and think of what works best for your situation. Using time as a unit of measurement for you goal can be a great starting point, but remember to change and adapt it as you progress towards your goal.
Tracking your progress can be a powerful tool to see how far you've come from your starting point. Not only does it help you from falling off the wagon before you achieve your outcome goal, but it can help motivate you as well.
For example, let's say John was clueless at cooking and wanted to improve his cooking skills. He aspires to be the next greatest chef, rivaling Gordan Ramsay himself. He's worked on his skills for quite a while, focusing on his process goals in order to achieve his outcome goal. He is now able to cook multiple dishes, learned how to prep his ingredients, plate his food nicely, and even cooked a wonderful 3-course meal for his family.
While his dream of becoming the next Gordan Ramsay is still far, far away, John has made tremendous progress towards his cooking skills. By measuring his goal through his progress, John is able to realize how much progress he's made since the start and see that his effort was not wasted.
It can be hard to track the progress of your goals. Use these four key measuring tactics when you are developing your goals!