Setting personal goals for professional development
Making progress on personal goals is like your ability to make progress on intellectual and professional goals. That's because goal-achievement, in general feeds your overall confidence in yourself and your satisfaction with your life. Progress on any sufficiently challenging and ambitious goal activates positive emotions that can propel you to make even more progress. Then, you can set other goals, stimulating a cycle of general satisfaction and success, according to associate professor of psychology Timothy A. Pychyl, Ph.D., of Carleton University in Ottawa.
Purpose of Different Goals
Personal goals help you enjoy your life. Goals such as losing weight, taking a trip overseas, ending a bad habit, or starting a new hobby are important to finding balance in your daily life. Goals such as becoming a better problem solver, becoming a better listener, or overcoming a fear are valuable intellectual goals. Your professional goals help you earn a living and excel in your career. For example, achieving goals such as landing a new job or implementing changes in the department you manage can build your skills and value in the workforce.
Elements of Goals
Compelling goals are flexible and firm. Goals are firm when they have structure in the form of details and deadlines. They’re flexible when they evolve as new information and opportunities arise. Having clarity about the end result you want can also help you see the steps you’ll need to take along the way. For example, if your goal is to lose 20 pounds in 60 days, map out steps to take each week such as getting a checkup from your doctor, scheduling daily exercises, or getting advice on your new diet.
Related Reading: Professional Development Goal Setting for Teachers
Relations among Goals
It’s common and natural for personal, intellectual and professional goals to overlap. For example, a goal to move to a new city can help you meet career goals along with reaching personal goals to improve life for yourself and your family. Likewise, an intellectual pursuit such as completing a writing course or taking a public speaking class could quench your mental thirst while helping you land a job or promotion. Creating goals that blend your personal, intellectual and professional ambitions, and staying aware of how your different goals are interdependent, can help you develop several important areas of your life all at once. This is better than spending too much time developing one area at the expense of another, suggests a November 2012 “Fast Company” article.