It is tradition to set annual goals in hopes of improving ourselves, and with a new year the opportunity to start fresh is upon us once again. We have another chance to become a better version of ourselves which can impact so many aspects of life around us. As a soccer player, determining your goals can depend on a variety of factors that contribute to success down the road. For each individual this path looks different and is unique only to you. The choice to embark on this path is only the start.
“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.”
– Henry David Thoreau
The definition of goal is the, “end toward which effort is directed,” per Merriam-Webster. The process of attaining a goal is typically classified into two categories, short-term and long-term. How you define long-term or short-term is up to you. For some, short-term goals contribute to the success of one long-term goal. While for others, short-term goals stand on their own. Having both long and short-term goals can allow you to see the big picture and every little step in between.
Soccer players probably have something different in mind when the word goal comes up, but the end result for both can feel similarly satisfying. That moment of achievement, however, is attributed to something, and that something is effort. When determining your goals take into account the effort associated so that you don’t overestimate yourself. You WANT to be successful so don’t put yourself in a situation to fail.
Remember, your goal should be a statement. I will get into shape this year. I will improve my grades this semester. I will score my first goal. Acknowledging that you are going to achieve your goals will only motivate you along your path to success.
Make a list of what you want to accomplish and be sure to remind yourself often about the goals you have set for yourself. Set a reminder on your phone. Print out your list and place it where you spend the most time. Whatever your method, this reminder is what holds you accountable internally. Everytime you see that reminder you will either feel the satisfaction of seeing your hard work coming to fruition, or the guilt of knowing that you’re falling behind.
If there is one factor that is paramount, it is being disciplined in the pursuit of your goals. Often goals fade into the year with no fulfillment to accompany them. What was once a mission of self improvement is now a memory. It can be tough to overcome new hurdles, but doing so has the ability to transform yourself and produce the results you desire.
Discipline, according to Merriam-Webster, is defined as a control gained by enforcing obedience or order. Apply this to yourself and gain control of your ability to achieve your goals. Force yourself to step outside of what might once have been normal and take the leap toward a more defined you. It takes discipline to wake up earlier than you are used to. It takes discipline to earn that A when it hasn’t been done before. It takes discipline to play a position you are not used to. But please note, a goal is nothing without the ability to achieve it.
Good luck reaching your goals in 2021!