Monday Morning Mindset: Effective Goal Setting +


Happy Monday and welcome to a new weekly installment for Chicago Athlete!

Let’s jump right in!

Goal Setting
We are constantly setting goals it seems. Personal life, business, race goals, bucket lists; heck we even set goals with regards to other people, and so much more! Did you know that there is a way to actually set goals beyond just dreaming it up? There are also different types of goals that are based on focus, time, and topic. Setting goals is an essential process for personal and professional development. Whether you want to achieve something big or make small improvements in your life, setting clear and achievable goals can help you stay focused and motivated.

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to set effective goals:

1. Define Your Priorities: Identify what is most important to you in various aspects of your life, such as career, health, relationships, personal growth, and hobbies. Knowing your priorities will guide you.

2. Be Specific: Make your goals as specific. Instead of setting a vague goal like “get in shape,” specify what that means to you, such as “run a 5k race in under 30 minutes.”

3. Set Measurable Goals: Your goals should be measurable, so you can track progress. Use quantifiable metrics or criteria to determine when you’ve achieved your goal. For example, “save $5,000 by the end of the year” is measurable.

4. Make Goals Achievable: Realistic and attainable. Consider your resources, time constraints, and abilities. Setting unattainable goals can lead to frustration and disappointment.

5. Set Timeframes: Establish deadlines for goals. Create a sense of urgency and accountability. Instead of”someday,” set a specific date or timeframe, such as “read one book per month for the next year.”

6. Break It Down: Large goals can be overwhelming, so break them down into smaller, manageable steps or milestones. These mini-goals will make your larger objective more achievable. One bite at a time!

7. Write It Down: Document your goals in writing. This makes them more tangible and provides a reference point for tracking your progress. Notebook, digital app, or a vision board!

8. Stay Flexible: While it’s important to set clear goals, be open to adjustments as circumstances change. Life is unpredictable, and sometimes you may need to revise your goals to stay on track.

9. Seek Accountability: Share your goals with a friend, family member, or mentor who can provide support and hold you accountable. Accountability is a powerful motivator.

10. Monitor Progress: Review your goals and assess your progress. If you’re not making the expected headway, consider why and make adjustments to your approach.

11. Stay Motivated: Maintain your motivation by reminding yourself why these goals are important to you. Visualize the benefits of achieving them and celebrate your successes along the way.

12. Learn from Setbacks: It’s normal to encounter setbacks and obstacles while pursuing your goals. Instead of giving up, view these challenges as opportunities to learn and grow. Adapt strategies.

13. Stay Committed: Consistency is key to achieving your goals. Stay committed to your goals even when enthusiasm fades.

14. Reward Yourself: Acknowledge your achievements along the way. Reward yourself when you reach milestones to maintain motivation and celebrate your progress.

15. Set New Goals: Once you’ve achieved a goal, set new ones to continue your personal growth and development. Setting and pursuing goals is an ongoing process.

Remember that setting and achieving goals is a personal journey, and what works for one person may not work for another. Tailor your goal-setting approach to your unique circumstances and preferences.

What is success? How do YOU define it?

Success is a subjective and multifaceted concept that can vary greatly from person to person and situation to situation. Generally referring to the achievement of a desired outcome, goal, or objective. However, what constitutes success can differ widely based on individual values, beliefs, and circumstances.
I feel there are so many different definitions; or more what one uses to define or measure “their” success. Where I really differ from many is I do not look to “failure” as the opposite of success. Failure is a term that is meant for something less subjective. When goal setting and we don’t achieve the goal, or hit a benchmark; we learn from that. It is not or does not have to be the end. It is a lesson.


I am sure you have heard this term in many scenarios, but do you know what it really means? Manifesting is a concept often associated with the law of attraction, which suggests that your thoughts and beliefs can shape your reality.

While manifesting is a highly individualized and may be a controversial practice, here is a start of some general steps to utilize…

16. Clarify Your Goals: Be specific about what you want to manifest.

17. Visualize: Spend time each day visualizing your goals as if they have already been achieved. Use all your senses.

18. Positive Affirmations: Use positive affirmations to reinforce your belief in your ability to achieve your goals.

19. Believe and Feel: It’s crucial to genuinely believe that your goals are attainable and to feel the emotions associated with achieving them.

20. Maintain a Positive Mindset: Cultivate a positive and optimistic mindset. Avoid dwelling on doubts, fears, or negative thoughts that may counteract your manifestations.

21. Take Inspired Action: Manifesting is not just about wishful thinking; it also involves taking action towards your goals.

22. Trust the Process: Patience is key when manifesting. Trust.

23. Gratitude: Express gratitude for what you already have and for the manifestations that are on their way. Gratitude attracts positivity.

24. Release Attachment: Letting go of your attachment to the outcome can help your manifestations come to fruition. T

25. Keep a Manifestation Journal: Write down your goals, intentions, and experiences in a manifestation journal.

26. Surround Yourself with Positivity: Spend time with supportive and positive people who uplift you. Avoid negativity and toxic influences that can hinder your manifestations.

27. Be Consistent: Manifesting is a daily practice. Stay consistent with your visualizations, affirmations, and actions to maintain a strong focus on your goals.

Remember that manifesting is a personal and subjective practice. While some people attribute their successes to manifesting, others may not find it effective. It’s essential to approach manifesting with an open mind and consider it as one of many tools for personal growth and goal achievement.

Notice something similar between Goal Setting and Manifesting? These are two powerful techniques that can help individuals achieve their dreams and desires. While they are separate concepts, they are often used together to create a plan for achieving specific goals. Don’t they complement each other nicely!

We are laying the foundation of having a more positive mindset or outlook. Achieving a positive mindset is essential for overall well-being and can significantly impact your personal and professional life.

Take a look at your goals, where are you on your path? Is this a path one that you have traveled previously? How long has this been a goal? What are your habits surrounding this goal? If this is an ongoing goal, what have you changed?

Let’s continue this!



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Terri was not an athlete growing up. Maybe a bit “athletic” and definitely awkward. Now she is not only a runner and triathlete, but a Coach (running + triathlon) as well! She has been a part of the Chicago “sport” community for over 25 years as a Licensed Massage Therapist and Movement Specialist. Terri runs her own business, Urban Wellness Chicago in the wicker Park neighborhood; and also works with the Northwestern University Athletic Department. She does now consider herself an athlete, and regularly competes in races of multiple distances. Oh and yes, still a bit awkward! Terri is also a Certified Life & Happiness Coach with her own business All You Coaching; with additional focus on performance, life transitions, confidence, and mindset.


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