How to write down life and business goals
December 31, 2013 3:43 AM   Subscribe

It's the goal writing season, and I recently came across an article that explained a specific technique for writing down one's goals.

The idea is that you'll be more successful in achieving your goals for 2014 if you write them down as if you're at the start of 2015 and you're looking back at 2014, saying things like: "This year, I successfully learned how to build a mobile app" or something.

The article was based - or claimed to be based - on scientific insights. I'm looking for more information on this technique.
posted by NekulturnY to Work & Money (5 answers total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
Was it about SMART goals? They're a popular project-management thing.

posted by momus_window at 6:48 AM on December 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

I've done this exercise every year for the past 2 or 3. It's a letter to myself from my future self at the end of the year, that talks about each major area of life (family/friends, relationships, career, health, money, personal growth, physical environment, fun/recreation) and talks about how those areas have developed over the past year. However, I don't really consider it a goal-setting exercise per se, because I don't look back at it during the year. It's much more a way of looking at the areas of your life and identifying which you may most want to change in the coming year (say you're happy with your monetary situation but you have absolutely no fun). One year I did it, it was eerily predictive, but other times it has definitely been more of wishful thinking.
posted by ch1x0r at 10:42 AM on December 31, 2013 [2 favorites]

Here's an article that focuses on distinguishing between setting goals and defining processes to achieve them that you might enjoy.
posted by carmicha at 12:30 PM on December 31, 2013

By coincidence I just ran across this WSJ article on Goal Factoring.
posted by bunderful at 4:06 PM on December 31, 2013

I found this future letter to yourself linked in the tools and rituals for reflecting on the past year thread.
posted by kristi at 1:45 PM on January 3, 2014

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