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Making it happen: a guide to achieving your goals

From getting the car fixed to weeding the garden, it’s easy to get caught up in the everyday problems and tasks life puts in our way. Without goals, we’d always be too busy to dedicate our time and energy to the things that are important like planning for retirement.

So how do you go about achieving those important goals, when the world is so determined to distract us? Here’s three ways you can get ahead when it comes to making and sticking to your goals:

1. Be specific

With only a general idea of our ambition it’s all too easy to lose the “why” and the “how” of our goal. If we can be clear about exactly what it is we’re working towards, it’s much easier to come up with an action plan for making it happen and to stay motivated as we’re following that plan.

2. Write it down

Leave that detailed plan in your head and there’s a good chance you won’t stick to it. Not only is it easy to forget a to-do list that’s etched in your brain, the act of writing it down actually strengthens your resolve to make a change or reach a goal. Research from the British Journal of Health Psychology found 91% of people who wrote down when and where they would exercise each week ended up following through1.

3. Track your progress

You have a clear and specific goal and your action plan is pinned to the fridge for all to see. So what’s next.If you don’t track your progress, you could still find yourself stalling on the path towards achievement. In recent research findings, the American Psychological Association2  found that frequent tracking of progress towards goals makes a significant impact on your chances of success. Recording or sharing those milestones with others will actually boost your chances of achieving your goal even more.

When it comes to retirement, the same principles apply. Having a clear vision of what you want your life to be like is a powerful way to focus on what will make your future meaningful. The next step is to take your vision and put it all down on paper - including all your practical, personal and financial goals.

So what next?

Getting expert advice can make a big difference to how prepared you are for retirement - both emotionally and financially. By discussing your lifestyle goals with a StatePlus financial planner you’ll have a much better understanding of the super and income you’ll need to make retirement a positive change in your life.

To get started, download our free Retirement guide or call us on 1800 620 305

Related articles for you

1 Achieve Your Goals: Research Reveals a Simple Trick That Doubles Your Chances for Success, Huffington Post, 19 January 2016
2 Frequently monitoring progress toward goals increases chance of success, Science Daily, 29 October 2015
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