Setting Goals

Posted by: Curtis Stevens on April 19, 2011 10:27 am

So, as discovered in the last blog, I want to write a book about counselling psychology.  I have made the goal specific and measureable.  I will know I’m done my goal when I have a finished book in my hand; complete with chapters, paper, binding, and a whimsical but wise looking picture of myself on the inlet, perhaps standing in front of a warm fire, or at the top of a mountain looking regal and…. Oh, but I digress.  I decided that I can reach this goal and that the first step in doing so was to enter my name along with the list of others involved with this blog.  I will have to force myself to keep writing and meet the schedule for submitting my entries.  It will teach me the discipline I will need to write the book.  The articles I write may even be edited so that they fit into chapters.  Once that becomes a habit – I heard somewhere that it takes 21 days of consistent execution of an activity to make it a habit.  Perhaps after 21 entries, this writing will be habit forming.  Let’s see… that is 21 submissions, 1 submission every two weeks.  That is 42 weeks of blogging to complete my first task.  The next task will be to compile these articles and look for common threads, a logical flow of ideas which will become an outline for a book.  That’s the next step, to come up with an outline.  I might even be able to do that while I’m doing the 42 weeks of blogging.  My goal, then, may look something like this:

Goal:  I want to write a book about counselling psychology by January of 2012.


1.  Enter Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy blog site

a. complete one submission every two weeks

b. write for one hour before bed in my home office.

2.  Compile blog entries and look for common themes.  Design outline of book.

3. Revise entries to fit book format.  Edit.

4. Submit to peer for review. Revise

5. Submit to second reader for review. Revise.

I might even go further in addressing timelines on when certain things will be done.  I may have to revisit my original timeline and re-assess the attainability of it.

I guess you get the picture by now.  What needs to happen is a realistic dialogue about the attainable steps involved in meeting your goal.  They become small goals in themselves which may require steps within the steps.  For me, that might mean scheduling a specific time each day to write.  It might mean building a special area in my home where I can hide away and do the blogging.  I have to make sure I have the tools for the task; a computer, internet access, etc.  Back to my original question about your New Year’s Resolution or failed counselling goals.  How much thought was put into the specificity of the goal?  Did you divide the goal into the many small steps it must take to reach the goal?  Did you divide the steps into smaller pieces so that you can successfully meet each step?  My guess is probably not.  It’s not too late!  We are only a quarter of the way into the year! There is still time!  Revisit the goal, hash it out and keep an eye open here to see how to apply this in counselling, parenting, hypnosis, and many other exciting topics.

*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

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