Most individuals are aware of and know that settings goals can be an important benchmark to chart our progress. Setting goals is an important directive to help us all achieve bigger and better things in our lives. However, many of our students voice these questions: “How do we set goals? How do we prioritize goals? Where do I start? What goals are important and which goals are not really goals?” These are all great questions! Don’t procrastinate… lets get to it!
What we do when setting goals is important in and of itself. If we set goals that are too generalized, a lot of our direction can get lost in the ambiguity of the goal itself. In other words, lets say that the goal is to become more physically fit. What would work better, saying, “I have a goal to get more physically fit.” or, “I have a goal to jog for 30 minutes, 3 times a week and swim laps in a pool for 30 minutes twice a week.”? Of course the latter sounds better! It is more focused, descriptive and detailed. One of the tools we suggest for our students to use is what we call the O.S.T. model. The OST acronym stands for Objective – Strategy – Tactic. It helps us to identify goals in a broader sense and narrow down our approach to accomplish that goal. Lets walk through what that would look like:
Get more physically fit.
Lift weights and participate in aerobic activity.
Lift weights in the gym on Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning. Go to a cycling class on Tuesday and Thursday evening after work.
Great! So we’re done, right? Not quite. Although the OST model is helpful and a good line to follow, we need to make sure that our other life goals are in sync with our goal of getting physically fit. If getting fit was my personal goal but my eating behavior was out of control, working out 5 days a week would only get me so far. But if I set OST goals for eating, sleeping, socializing, etc… My goals would start to compliment one another and help to keep me on track! In short, when goals are not focused and detailed, they typically do not happen.
This is yet another tool you can add to your tool belt when communicating and helping to empower your failure to launch or boomerang son to make healthy, specific goals that are measurable and attainable!
About the Author
Matthew Arrington grew up in Southern California and has a deep fondness for the ocean and water in general. He’s lived in most of the western united states and attended school in Oregon, where he earned a few degrees in business including, marketing, leadership and organizational management and a Masters in Business. Matt has a huge passion for working with young men to increase their chances of success and credits his current success to the many positive male role models that helped him grow into manhood.