30/09/2013 07:43 BST | Updated 29/11/2013 05:12 GMT

How to Set Goals You Can Achieve

With autumn here and the distant memory of those abandoned New Year resolutions, you may well be demoralised into thinking that goals cannot be achieved easily.

However, if you commit to a proper process you can, and indeed will, achieve your goals.

I would like to tell you how I managed to identify my goals for setting up my own business and how I achieved them.

When I was leaving the relative security of paid employment for the peculiarities of self-employment, I needed to decide what I was going to do, as, like a lot of people, I had a chequered career history. I chose to work in a field that I most enjoyed, people development. I then had to research the market to see where there was a gap, and if there was a gap, if I had the capability to fill it.

I did a lot of research, most of which cost me no money but a lot of my time. I asked friends, family and colleagues. I looked in the press and on the Internet, and I spoke with professionals, people already in business and business associations. All the research told me was that there was room for a Life Coach who wanted to help people to become the very best version of themselves.

I identified my Unique Selling Point - ME! No other company had me within their employ. So I used this to my advantage and set about contacting everyone I knew and told then what I was doing and asked them to consider me for work.

Help comes to those who help themselves. The old adage "All good things come to those who wait" is true, but it's also true that more help comes to those who help themselves. I hated the wait for the telephone to ring, so I acted as if my business was already running and built a database, set up templates, made business cards, researched the possibilities of employing staff, hiring premises and even working abroad. Nothing was out of reach.

This enabled me to feel and act as if I was already in business, so when I networked - and believe me, I networked - I sounded professional. In time the telephone did ring and one thing led to another.

I have been in my successful business for eight years now and I want to inspire and motivate you to achieve your goals.

But what are your goals? The very first thing you need to do is take some time to seriously consider what goals you want to achieve. Start by deciding what your goals are, and what are you most dissatisfied with in your life.

Look at your personal life, your personal growth, your career, your finances, your professional development. Once you have set goals for your personal life, you can apply this process to the goals for your career as well.

Commit to 1-3 goals to get you started, you can add more as each you achieve each goal. Aim to have no more than seven goals at any one time, whilst you work on the top three as a priority. Sometimes it is better to set yourself smaller goals, then you will be motivated to set bigger ones as you achieve them.

Some people prefer to set one or two large goals, and put all their energy and focus into those. The number of goals you set is more to do with your personality than with your likelihood of success. Whichever you choose is fine, each is equally successful, if you follow this process. Once you have your goals, look at them in conjunction with each other to ensure they are not pulling you in different directions.

Once you have decided on your goals, refine them. All goals should be written down, be personal, in the present tense and positive.

All goals should start with "I". The idea of present tense is important as it convinces your subconscious to think you are already achieving it. The subconscious part of your brain does not judge the information it is presented with, it cannot tell the difference between fantasy and reality. So if your goal is, for instance, to build a business, speak to yourself as if it is already underway and your subconscious will think you are currently doing so. This adds to your success. Always write down your goals as it cements them into your psyche. Research has proven that goals that are written down have a significantly higher rate of success.

Goals must be positive. Goals must be about what you want to achieve, have or do. Focus on what the goal will give you. What benefits are there to achieving your goal? Do not think of what you are giving up or losing, as this is the wrong direction to focus in - look forward not back.

Irrespective of the goal, there are only four benefits:

1. Well being

2. Status

3. Money

4. Time

Once you know this, you will be able to keep that in focus and the idea of what you are aiming to achieve has a reason behind it, a benefit.

One of the main causes of goals not working is focusing on what you are missing out on and not on what you are gaining. Focus on what you will gain from achieving your goals.

It is time now for you to take action and to really begin to change your life!