By Jenifer Tull-Gauger

One of my mentors, Michael Newland Renshi, was the founder of East Valley Martial Arts – Kenshin Kan.  He taught me the importance of writing down goals.  Newland Renshi taught me the “SMART” goal-setting system: goals should be Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and have a Time table.  I still have more to learn in implementing long-term goals; however, setting goals as I learned at the dojo has been life-changing for me.

In addition to Newland Renshi, I have come across other experts who tout the importance of writing your goals.  So, I felt it important to share with you just how powerful this tool can be.  I encourage you to write your goals and to take them seriously and keep working on them.  If there is anything your dojo can do to help you as you strive for your goals, please do not hesitate to ask!

In The Success Principles by Jack Canfield with Janet Switzer, it says: “One of the best ways to get clarity and specificity on your goals is to write them out in detail—as if you were writing specifications for a work order. …When you write it all down, your subconscious mind will know what to work on,  It will know which opportunities to hone in on to help you reach your goal.”

Kevin Trudeau, author of Natural Cures They Don’t Want You to Know About, says writing down goals is one key that can help you be healthy.

The radio financial guru Dave Ramsey talked about goals around New Years.  Mr. Ramsey’s recipe for goals is they must be Specific, Measurable, Your Own (not just what someone else wants you to do, you must want it yourself), have a Timeframe and be Written down.  He talked about setting a goal with a year’s timeframe, then breaking it down into months, and weeks, to figure out how to get started moving forward immediately.  You don’t have to wait for a new year to focus on your goals.

If you want to delve deeper into goal-setting, I have a list of goals for every area of life, from Christopher Ian Chenowith.  If you want very detailed goal guidance, those areas are:  Spiritual, Family, Relationship, Home/Personal Environment, Service to Others/How I Want to Make a Difference, Career, Income, Financial/Investment, Education, Travel, Health, Physical Fitness, Things I Want to Do, Things I Want to Become, and Things I Want to Have.  Working on goals in all those areas can be overwhelming, but if you break them down into smaller chunks, it makes them more manageable.

All of our students are encouraged to write down and review their goals.  I also encourage you to consider teaming up and writing out a few goals with your immediate family members (goals for your family).  They are not just for New Year’s.  If you set smart goals, write them down and work toward them, you are using a powerful, life-changing tool.

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