Achieve Any Goal by Answering These 4 Questions

We’re one month into 2012. As I reflect on the progress I’ve made on my goals for the year, I wonder: how many people are achieving their goals? How many people have already given up? According to Douglas Vermeeren, “…of the 20 percent of the population that does set goals, roughly 70 percent fail to achieve the goals they have set for themselves”.

That means the majority of us have already fallen behind on our 2012 resolutions. Fortunately, there’s still 11 months left in the year. And every day we have another chance to get back on the horse and start moving forward. Want to achieve your goal? Answer four key questions to give yourself a firm foundation for success.

Accomplish any goal by asking yourself these four questions:


WHAT is your goal? First, you must clearly define what you want to accomplish. Look into the future. Think about who you could be and should be as an individual, leader, spouse, friend, etc. What steps do you need to take to reach that ideal future?

Example: I want to lose 30 pounds.

WHEN will you accomplish your goal? Your goal must have an end date. If not, you will have a slew of opportunities to live by excuses. And when you live by excuses, your goal dies by them. Do not give yourself room to procrastinate. Set a deadline and stick with it. Sink or swim.

Example: I want to lose 30 pounds by June 2012.

HOW will you achieve your goal? After you have determined the what and when, you have a clear path to determining the how. Work backwards. Identify your current state and your desired state (your Point A and Point B). Between them you have “The Gap”. Your how is the bridge over The Gap. Construct a strong bridge. Plan out in detail what you need to do. Tap into your passions and strengths. This is the engine that propels you to success.

Example: I want to lose 30 pounds by June 2012 by working out five days a week and eliminating carbohydrates during the workweek.

WHY do you want achieve this goal? The final question is the most powerful and important one. The answer to this question is what keeps you going when you want to stop. It provides you the passion and inspiration to press on. This is the meaning that fuels your efforts.

Example: I want to lose 30 pounds by June 2012 by working out 5 days a week and eliminating carbohydrates during the workweek, because I want to have energy to be the best dad and husband for my family.


Goal setting is important. It motivates us. Gives us something to strive for. But just saying your going to achieve a goal isn’t enough. You have to have a plan. You need a clear strategy for getting from point A (where you are now) to Point B (where you want to be).

2012 is still new and fresh. Seize the day and make the most of the opportunities in front of you. Do not simply think about who you could be and should be. Take action to BECOME that person. Why wait another day?