Lessons From My Journal: Make Clear & Specific Goals

writing my career goals

writing my career goals

In my recent Working Out Loud Circle, we discussed goal-setting.

I related to my Circle that I was reading through my old journal last week and came across a goal I had made in 2004 and again in 2005. I had written down in several places (on different days) that I was going to sit and pass my real estate exam. I also wrote that I was going to make $1m in sales my first year as a realtor.

In another location of my journal, I wrote that I would make $1m in sales and $100,000 in commissions. Finally, I wrote that the average price of each home would be $250k.

There are several points I want to make about the above goals:

1) I did a home study course for the 72 hours pre-licensing course, while I worked full time.

2) “Experts” in the business told me it was rare for a new agent to make any sale their first year.

3) I wrote these goals about 2 years before the real estate market collapsed.

So, what happened?

In the Fall of 2005, I sat and passed the real estate exam my first time without so much as the blink of an eye. In other words, I studied. I sat. I passed.

Consequently, during the first seven months or so of 2006, my total sales was $1.2 million. And I had several listings. I was living in Georgia at the time.

My goal of making $100,000 from $1m in sales was obviously unrealistic. Let me explain. My share of each sale, according to my real estate salesperson contract was 3% in commissions.

So my goals were obviously conflicted. Three percent of $1m (my sales goal) is only $30,000. Which brings me to my next point.

Goals Must Be Clear and Specific

The point I’m trying to make here however is that yes, make goals. But be specific with your goals.  Also, your goals should make reasonably good sense.

Another thing I learned is that your goals must be clear. In another post, I will share other parts of my journal where I made goals that weren’t very clear. Hence when I “achieved” those goals, the results weren’t what I expected.  Neither was the outcome what I had intended.

To be successful at achieving your goals, Timothy Sykes in his article 4 Habits of Millionaires That Work for Everyone, informs us that “Millionnaires have clear goals”.

Take Action

Yet, I’m sharing this to make a point. Regardless of your circumstances, you can achieve your goals.

However, you have to write your goals down. AND, you have to work towards those goals. It bears repeating. Take action.

I didn’t just wish to sell $1m worth of real estate. I studied and passed the real estate exam. Then, I signed up with a broker. After which I marketed myself through open houses, flyers and mailings. I also quit my full time job so I could be a real estate salesperson full time. I wanted all in.

Part of my reward for taking “massive” action was that in about a year, I was certified as a HUD reseller. I was also recruited to lead new homebuyer seminars at the local  housing agency.

Picture (Visualize) Your Goals

One other way to increase the impact of goal setting is to draw pictures and/or illustrations of your goals. You can simply put a photo of your goal(s) somewhere visible. Do you want to lose 50 pounds and start wearing a size 5 dress? Put an old photo of you as a size 5 or one of a size 5 model. Or are you thinking of buying a house or condo? Put a photo of a nice house or draw a pictorial of the house that you are dreaming about in a place where you can see it every day.

Bottom line: Your goals must be CLEAR and SPECIFIC. Otherwise, you may end up disappointed because you didn’t get exactly what you wanted.

Finally, when there’s a lot going on in life, it really helps to write down what you want. My experience has been that goal setting reduced the feelings I had of being overwhelmed.


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Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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