Smart Life Goals

Can Someone Please Make Goal Setting Easy for Me?

Think goal setting is hard? Well it’s not. The actual goal setting part is easy and fun. It’s setting aside the time to do it that is difficult. We’d much rather sit on “input mode” in front of the TV or internet because that doesn’t require much thinking.

Well if you are yearning for something better in your life right now, do yourself a favor and use this simple guide and free Life Goals and Values Worksheet to discover your values, establish your goals, and craft your action plan to get there.

Unleash the Power of Goal Setting

Did you know that only 3% of people in the US set goals, and that they are among the wealthiest folks in the nation?! If you want to accomplish something, you can do it! But you must know where you want to go, have a plan to get there, and monitor your progress along the way.

I have created a very easy to use excel spreadsheet template to uncover your values, establish your goals, and craft your action plans for each goal. I will keep this as simple and streamlined as possible. Please download the template before starting.

Personal Values

If you want to set your goals very fast, you can skip this part and go to the “Life Goals” heading below. If you want a compass to guide your goal setting then, read this part.

Values are our inner guides that tell us how to live our lives. They help us make the most of our most valuable resource, time. They keep us from becoming caught up in distractions that steal our time away from what we really want. In short, they help us live our best life possible.

Discover Your Personal Values


  1. Go to the “List of Values” tab in the LifeGoals spreadsheet.
  2. Either print for offline viewing or read it online.
  3. Highlight the ones that resonate with how you want your life to be.
  4. You may add ones to this list or define them more specifically.
  5. Try to get this down to 10-20 values by merging similar ones or eliminating ones that are not as important.
  6. Write out your top 10-20 on yellow sticky notes for prioritizing.
  7. Prioritize these by continually comparing them two at a time until you have them in order.
  8. Type these into the tab “Your Values.”
  9. Place an (x) under each of the categories that those values apply too. See the examples you have questions on how it should look.


Free Life Goals Tracker

Click to Download the Free Life Goals WorkSheet

Life Goals

Here’s the fun stuff. What if I told you you can have just about anything you want? Well you can! The real “secret” of this life is that you can achieve anything to which you set your mind. Here’s the magic formula: you must pick your destination, plot your course, execute your plan consistently over time, and monitor your progress, adjusting as necessary. Most of us are doing a lot of this on the fly and that’s fine. However if you want big changes that are important to you, this process will keep you more focused and more likely to succeed.

Setting Your Life Goals


  1. Go to the “Life Goals Tracker” tab in the LifeGoals spreadsheet. (See example tab for how it might look)
  2. Fill in your goals in the different categories (career, relationships, financial, physical, etc.). Don’t feel like you have to fill them all in at once.
  3. Fill in the SMART criteria for each goal: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Timebound. Each one is explained on the sheet. This can be done either online or printout the sheet.
  4. Go to the “Action Plan Template.”
  5. To fill out on paper, print out as many templates as the number of goals you have.
  6. To fill out online, create as many copies as the number of goals you have. (Go to “Edit”>“Copy or Move Sheet”>click on “create copy”>Click OK)
  7. Fill in the Category and Goal.
  8. Optional: Fill in the Values from “Your Values” tab that align with this goal. If none of your values align, this could be a red flag that either this goal is not right for you, or that you’re missing a value that is important to you.
  9. Fill out an “Action Plan Template” for each goal you have. Include all the steps. Be really specific and detailed. Include Due date if appropriate.
  10. Add action steps into your calendar.
  11. Check off Actions as they are completed.

Tracking Your Progress

This is really important. Just as a pilot needs to continually monitor his location and heading relative to his destination, so must we monitor our progress toward our goals. If you’ve put together a complete action plan then this is easy. There are several ways you can track progress:

  1. Your current calendar. A great one is Google Calendar. Online or offline, schedule your action steps and fill in habits achieved each day.
  2. Online tracker: is a great way to track those goals that involve a daily or recurring actions. Very easy to use.
  3. The “Progress Calendar” Tab in the LifeGoals worksheet. You can use this for success charts which I will cover in another post soon.

Some Success Tips

  1. When setting your goals, allow yourself to dream big.
  2. Don’t worry about past attempts. Today is a new day. The future is yours to shape!
  3. Everyday visualize yourself achieving your goal. Believe! You Can Do It!
  4. When tackling your goals and setting your action plan, take it slow. Apply the Rule of One, which says to start only one goal at a time for the most success. Don’t be in a rush. Slow and steady wins the race.
  5. Get a Goal Buddy or more than one to help spur each other on with your goals.
  6. Make sure that your goals are YOURS, not someone else’s idea of what your goals should be.
  7. Goal setting is the easy part. Doing the action steps and monitoring your progress is where the real work is.
  8. Be persistent and methodical. Slow and steady wins the race!
  9. There is no “Failure” just opportunities to learn and readjust your strategy. See “What’s Getting in Your Way.
  10. You goals may morph over time. Adapt your goal list and action plan accordingly!
  11. If traditional goal setting is not for you then just use this loosely to whatever extent you can.
  12. Celebrate successes along the way even if they are small. Enjoy the journey. (Here are some keys to happiness.)
  13. Remember Action Creates Energy so get started now no matter how you feel and watch your enthusiasm grow!

Additional Resources

Goals On Track – very cool online goal software. “an easy to use, web 2.0 style goal setting, goal tracking, task and time management software that helps you accomplish any goals in life.” It is a pay service, but it’s got a 100% money back guarantee. Hey, if it helps you reach your goals, especially financial ones, it will probably pay for itself many times over.

Quantum Cookbook – If you are interested in adding the power of intention to your goals, this course is awesome. Having a guide that helps you focus your mind on your goals on a daily basis is one of the most powerful things you can do to ensure that you follow through. And it has a 200% money back guarantee. (Basiscally if you don’t find value in the course for any reason they will refund you double what you paid!)

Please Share!

Please share your comments on Goal Setting and Personal Values. All comments big and small are very welcomed!

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  1. 1
    June 12th, 2007 at 10:54 am

    A couple more ideas.

    1) On the Action Plan you can add a “Context” column if you want this to be integrated into “Getting Things Done.”

    2) If anyone wants to take this Worksheet and modify it for printing onto a Pocket Mod that would be wayyyyy cool! If you do, please let me know and please just leave credit for my website on there. Thanks.

  2. 2
    June 12th, 2007 at 11:39 am

    Great post, this looks like a very useful tool. You get a link!

  3. 4
    June 12th, 2007 at 12:55 pm

    Thanks Stephen!

  4. 6
    June 12th, 2007 at 3:48 pm

    What a great post! I totally suck at setting goals and always tend to just go with the flow. I’m definitely gonna try to follow your tips :)
    You’ve been stumbled by the way ;)

  5. 7
    Lyman Reed
    June 13th, 2007 at 2:17 am

    Great job, agentsully! I especially liked your afterthought idea of adding a context column to the action planner. Thanks for sharing this with people!

  6. 8
    June 13th, 2007 at 11:23 am

    Dee – good luck with setting your goals. This really does make it easy.

    Thanks Lyman. Yeah, I may update the worksheet and add that if I have time today.

    Thanks for commenting!

  7. 9
    Dick Ingersoll
    June 16th, 2007 at 4:48 pm

    Well Done!!! This is an excellent free resource for goal setters. Thank You.

  8. 11
    June 24th, 2007 at 4:01 pm

    Thanks Dick, Glad you liked this resource.

  9. 17
    Matthew Cornell
    July 24th, 2007 at 6:49 pm

    Thanks for the spreadsheet. I looked for the values I found in ‘HOW DEMOCRATS AND PROGRESSIVES CAN WIN: SOLUTIONS FROM GEORGE LAKOFF’ ( – obviously not working), and found not all of them on your list… For reference they are:

    Empathy Opportunity
    Responsibility Prosperity
    Strength Community
    Protection Service
    Fairness Cooperation
    Fulfillment Trust
    Freedom Honesty


  10. 18
    July 24th, 2007 at 11:35 pm

    @Matthew – thanks for those additions! How did I miss those! :) When I get a chance I will add them to the excel document worksheet! thanks!

  11. 22
    Chad Hudson
    August 14th, 2007 at 9:24 pm

    Fantastic! Thank you very much. I am trying to develop a series of posts on “branding.” I, prayerfully, will be sending some people your way through recommendations to this post and your site.

    I just wanted to drop in and say thanks, this was truly helpful to get me started!

  12. 24
    August 17th, 2007 at 12:03 pm

    @Chad – thanks! Good luck!

  13. 25
    August 18th, 2007 at 8:27 pm

    hi nice post, i enjoyed it

  14. 26
    August 18th, 2007 at 8:53 pm

    Thanks Tate!

  15. 29
    Goal Setting Dude
    September 6th, 2007 at 1:13 pm

    Did not know that 3% of all goal setters are wealthy. Anyways its important to set milestones and set realistic goals.

  16. 37
    November 29th, 2007 at 11:34 pm

    I can’t dowlnload it ?
    can someone help me?

    Thanks very much,


  17. 38
    November 29th, 2007 at 11:36 pm

    I’, having problems when i tried to download the “Goal planner spread sheet”

  18. 40
    January 22nd, 2008 at 6:04 pm is similar to joesgoals but looks better and allows to display more actions/goals.

  19. 41
    February 19th, 2008 at 2:08 pm

    I just stumbled across this post. Great goals setting tool, and free is always best. Thanks!

  20. 42
    February 20th, 2008 at 3:40 am

    Great information.

    One problem I’ve noticed in my own life is that I have no problem setting goals. The hard part is reaching those goals. Doing what you said you were going to do. Staying focused.

    Here’s a great article on staying focused on the goals that you set for yourself:

    All in all, great post agentSully.

  21. 45
    Stomach Exercises
    March 10th, 2008 at 6:20 pm

    This is a great tool. Thank you for offering it for free.

  22. 46
    Goal Setting Success
    March 11th, 2008 at 9:51 am

    Success is well written goals and all else is commentry.

    Fantastic article about goals setting.

  23. 47
    Quit Smoking Today
    April 4th, 2008 at 5:53 pm

    Goal setting is POWERFUL. If you don’t have a goal in sight it is hard to reach it. It took me some months to understand it completely, but now I’ve reached many of my goals, including dropping bad habits.

  24. 49
    August 14th, 2008 at 2:52 am

    Added to my download list.

  25. 50
    August 22nd, 2008 at 9:36 am

    Great advice it has helped me start reaching my goals instead of just thinking about how I should do this and that.

  26. 51
    November 9th, 2008 at 1:50 pm

    Excellent work mate….

  27. 52
    November 13th, 2008 at 8:28 pm

    Great idea for setting, tracking, and attaining one’s goals. I’m like one of the previous posters who’s just been going with the flow and am going to change that and “live life by design”.
    One request…I’m pretty much Excel illiterate. You mentioned adding a “context” column to the action plan. Are you saying add it to the “action plan template” the one with the header “Action Steps”? And where should I add that? Under “Values” or to the left in the “D” excel column?
    Also, you mentioned a “getting things done”. Where is that?
    Thanks so much,

  28. 54
    May 30th, 2009 at 11:29 am

    You may want to check out, a very nicely built web app designed for tracking goals and todo lists, and has time tracking. It’s clear, focused, easy to navigate, worth a try.

  29. 55
    June 6th, 2009 at 11:19 am

    @Harry – thanks for the addition!

  30. 59
    December 28th, 2009 at 9:52 am

    Thanks for the spreadsheet. It will be a great help with setting goals in the new year.

  31. 60
    December 31st, 2009 at 4:43 pm

    Good luck Rene!

  32. 61
    Simple Life Tool
    June 10th, 2010 at 11:42 pm

    Great stuff. Thanks for the file to download.

  33. 62
    Indigo Papers
    November 9th, 2010 at 2:22 am

    Great Post. I enjoyed reading it so much, very helpful!

  34. 63
    December 15th, 2010 at 9:20 pm

    great post! just what I need to make 2011 an awesome year.

  35. 64
    December 18th, 2010 at 10:07 pm

    @Tosin – Awesome! Thanks! Wishing you success!

  36. 65
    Quit Smoking
    May 25th, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    Great article and spreadsheet!

    I’ll recommend this to the people that I help quit smoking.


  37. 67
    Bryce Barthen
    June 23rd, 2012 at 1:01 am

    I will right away grasp your rss as I can not to find your e-mail subscription link or e-newsletter service. Do you’ve any? Kindly let me know in order that I may subscribe. Thanks.

  38. 69
    August 12th, 2012 at 10:49 pm

    Bryce, you can subscribe in the upper right hand corner of my sidebar. Thanks!

  39. 72
    May 21st, 2013 at 8:35 pm

    Goal setting is a great tool so that you can focus on what you want. Also using the law of attraction with goalsetting can be extremely powerful recognising that it’s not just the process of goalsetting that will get you to your end result but how you feel about your goal. Does it feel good can you visualise it as being already done. This will help you immensely in creating the life that you want.


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