16 Undeniable Benefits of Goal Setting

Loyd Mears

Goal setting! When is the first time you heard about setting goals?

It seems like goal setting is so old and worn out, but even so, it’s impossible to even know you’re successful if you don’t have goals.

Everything that can be said about goals has definitely already been said.

In case you have some doubt about the benefits of having goals, browse a few of the benefits below. You may find a few surprises!

Set and strive to achieve personal goals for yourself, and you will experience a multitude of benefits. It’s a fact that pursuing them will enrich your life in many ways, even in failure.

Andrew Carnegie Portrait

“If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy and inspires your hopes.”

Andrew Carnegie

Below are the benefits you get if you create goals and stick to them.

There are many more reasons why goal setting is important.

Video: 16 Undeniable Benefits Of Goal Setting

1. Achieve Better And Faster Results

Don’t wish, but define and write down what you want and it will propel you to take action. Setting written goals helps you concentrate on how to achieve them. You alter your mind to focus on the “how” rather than the “what.”

Doing even small things every day progresses you toward your goals and amounts to better and faster results over time.

Setting goals causes better and faster results in learning rates, as shown in John Hattie’s book Visible Learning and the Science of How We Learn. Students learned up to 250% faster during a study with challenging goals than they did when they had a generic aim like “to do their best.”

Find out how to make a perfect goal action plan.

2. More Positive Attitude And Greater Achievement

Compelling goals give you a sense of purpose. They place you in command of your future. Having a purpose and a sense of control creates a more positive mindset and results in more extraordinary achievement.

Since your goals stem from your desires, you feel more positive working toward what you want. They help keep your dream real to you.

Neuroscience research suggests our brains use dopamine as an internal system to seek goals. A study of animals around goal setting proved that dopamine signals get more potent as goals become closer and are achieved.

3. Create A Sense Of Purpose

People need a purpose in life, and goals can give them that sense of purpose. Your plans give you strong reasons to get up in the morning, get things done, and live the life you crave.

Goal setting helps you identify your purpose in life. By deliberating on who you are and what you want to do in your life, you uncover your purpose. If you center your plans on that purpose, your life matures and grows more meaningful.

The late Yogi Berra, one of the greatest figures in baseball history, said,

“If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up someplace else.”

Yogi Berra

If you want to be something in life, decide what that is and what that looks like and write it down. Your plans give you strong reasons to get up in the morning, get things done, and live the life you crave.

4. Have a Clear Direction

Above all, goals give you direction. They provide you with something on which to focus your efforts. They keep you on track to get where you want to be.

Setting lifetime goals is exercising your power of choice to determine your ultimate destination. So, instead of wandering through life, you can choose where you want to go.

“All successful people have a goal. No one can get anywhere unless he knows where he wants to go and what he wants to be or do.”

Norman Vincent Peale

Having a general concept of what you want to achieve isn’t enough. You need a clear path that specific goals provide. Don’t get sidetracked by your daily life events because you have no plans to rein you in.

5. Maintain Consistent Focus And Actions

Goals give you targets towards which to direct your time and energy. Without important goals to focus on, you waste energy and time on activities that detract from your dreams.

Once you set clear objectives, remind yourself daily of what they are and you’ll focus to achieve them. You won’t get derailed by conditions that impede your pursuit of your dreams.

People who don’t set goals are easily overwhelmed. There is always a lot to do and little time. Your priorities become clear and you have consistent focus and actions.

6. Helps Overcoming Procrastination

Procrastination is one of the most damaging barriers to success.
Well crafted and exciting goals help you to overcome procrastination because you have a strong desire to get something. Make sure your goals are things you want very much to achieve.

You won’t be distracted if you:

  • Create specific goals that reflect your most potent desires.
  • Remind yourself of them daily.

You’ll waste less time on insignificant or unproductive activities that don’t help you accomplish your goal.

7. Fosters Better Time Management

World Time Clocks

Setting goals motivates you to manage your time better, and knowing what you want to do results in better time management.

There are several reasons why people don’t manage time whenever they don’t have clear goals.

First, it’s harder to decide what to do because, without goals, you have unclear priorities. Also, you make bad decisions and waste time doing things that don’t improve your life because you lack the direction.

Indeed, time is a resource, but it’s special because it’s so limited.

“If you want to improve how you manage time – stop doing what doesn’t need to be done!”

Peter Drucker

You rarely have enough resources to do everything, so setting goals can help you to prioritize better. Your goals force you to align your resources with your plans and manage your time better.

Without a goal, you fritter away time on unimportant activities.

8. Better Decision Making

Goal setting helps you focus on what is significant to you, what you want to achieve, and where you want to be in the future. This view enables you to decide better.
Knowing where you want to go puts you in a better position to make important life decisions. You make better decisions if you know what is important to you and what you want to do.

Your decision making will be better because knowing what you want to achieve means you can ask, “does this take me closer to my goal?” Clear goals also help you solve problems better.

9. Meaningful Goals Motivate You

Goals inspire you. If the goal is essential to you, it can be motivating. Whenever you strike out to achieve something, there will be problems. It’s easy to give up if you don’t have a firm purpose of getting what you want.

When you choose your goals, choose well, and you stand a better chance of persevering through thick and thin. The secret is persistence. Seeing progress daily and weekly helps you to be persistent.

Capitalize on goals to motivate you by planning smaller steps you can do in a short time. Then you see your progress and feel satisfaction.

10. Provides Measurement For Progress

Graphs and Charts

Proper goal setting gives you specific actions to complete by a certain time. You can see if you are making progress by keeping track and noting if you are on schedule or not.

If you are falling behind, make corrections to get caught up again.
Identify your shortcomings, adapt your plan, and devise a way to move forward to achieve your goals.

11. Makes You Responsible

Responsibility is only meaningful if your goals are important to you, so make an effort to choose well. Write down your goals and be accountable. People who write them down are successful more often than those who don’t.

A compelling purpose makes you accountable to yourself when you commit to action, and your results fall short.

For example, you want to lose four pounds per month and only lose three. Then you should change your exercise routine and diet to get back on target because you are accountable.

12. Sets Boundaries

Clear and concrete goals will help you draw a firm line for yourself. You can avoid distractions or avoid toxic people and situations that restrict your progress.

As long as you use your goals as a guide for what you do, you’ll have clear boundaries in which to thrive.

13. Lowers Stress and Raises Peace of Mind

Goals can reduce stress because you know what you want to do, and you have a plan to do it. Not knowing is a significant source of stress.

It’s easier to make decisions, and your progress gives you confidence and a sense of accomplishment.

Too often, you have too many things on your mind. It’s effortless then to become distracted and get off course. Likewise, worrying about what to do can be disturbing.

Writing down your goals can help you sort out those ideas, apply mindset and focus, then propel you into commitment and action.

Stressed Woman

Too often, you have too many things on your mind. It’s effortless then to become distracted and get off course. Likewise, worrying about what to do can be disturbing.
Writing down your goals can help you sort out those ideas, apply mindset and focus, then propel you into commitment and action.

14. Clarifies What Is Meaningful To You

Your goals create a clear focus on what you think is essential in life. You must think about what is important to you and what you want to do in life. If you reflect on your hopes and dreams, your goals will center on what is important to you.

Then you focus your attention on essential things. Having well thought out goals stops you from wasting time doing unimportant things.

15. Control Your Future

Setting goals helps you take command over your future. Without goals, all humans drift haphazardly. You don’t have a strategy to direct your life, so you go with the flow. However, setting goals means you have more control over where you are going and how you get there.

Write down your goals and the steps you will take to reach those goals, and you have a program for your future. So, don’t aimlessly drift through life. Instead, take power into your own hands.

16. Have Joyful Satisfaction

Goals make your life more challenging. At the same time, they give you a feeling of personal satisfaction. Setting and reaching your personal goals shows you your capabilities and gives you a hint of your full potential. When you persevere through all the challenges, you grow and become more skilled, confident, and assertive.

Every successful step toward fulfilling your goals produces confidence and gives you a feeling of pride. The more you accomplish, the better you feel about yourself.

5 Goal-setting Principles From Science

Research by Locke and Latham demonstrates that goal-setting works.
Locke examined over a decade of research on the effects of goal setting and performance. The studies found that over 90% of the time, specific and challenging goals led to higher performance than easy or generic goals. A generic goal would be “to do your best.”

Locke and Latham also stated that five goal-setting principles could help improve your chances of success.

  • Clarity is essential when it comes to goals. Setting clear and specific goals eliminates the confusion that occurs when a goal is set more generically.
  • Challenging goals expand your ability to achieve more. Each success you accomplish helps you build a winning mindset.
  • Commitment is also vital. Not committing to your goal with everything you have makes you less likely to achieve it.
  • Feedback helps you find what you are doing right and how well you are doing. Feedback allows you to adjust your expectations and your plans in the future.
  • Task Complexity is the final factor. It’s essential to set goals that align with the goal’s complexity.

Final Words About the Benefits of Goal Setting

The benefits of goal setting are clear. Be sure your goals are clear and make them a bit challenging. Start setting goals and get a fresh start towards achieving your ideal life.

Best wishes in your goal-setting efforts!


Locke, E., & Latham, G. (2020). A Theory of Goal Setting and Task Performance. Academy Of Management Review. Retrieved from https://www.academia.edu/26293602/A_Theo

Locke, E. A., & Latham, G. P. (2002). Building a practically useful theory of goal setting and task motivation. American Psychologist, 57(9), 705-717. https://psycnet.apa.org/record/2002-15790-003