This entry is part 2 of 3 in the series Goals Series
Posts So Far In The Series

Knowing What Types Of Goals We Set Is Beneficial To The Outcome

When we wake up in the morning and plan our day, are we setting a goal? If so, what type is it? What about when we decide to lose ten pounds, or to have children? These are all scenarios of different goals. When we set goals, we never think about the types or categories of those goals. Being aware of the type or category, help us set more realistic and achievable goals. It also helps us to set the type of goals we don’t forget almost the moment we set them.

By choosing to be more aware of the classification of goals, we contribute to the likelihood of achieving them. Our awareness takes the power away from subconscious goals and allows us to focus on the conscious ones. When the goals we set is on the forefront of our mind, they are more viable or achievable. 

What are the types of goals to set?

Short-Term Goals

Types of goals

The goals we set daily are short-term goals. They are short term because we intend to accomplish them soon. We can classify soon as today, tomorrow, or even a week later. Some say a short-term goal can be achievable even a year after it’s made. I don’t agree. The longest duration of a short-term goal shouldn’t be longer than six months. If a goal takes a year to achieve, then it falls into another category.

Here is another way to look at short-term goals. Ever go on a job interview and the interviewer asks, what are your short-term goals? What do you think the interviewer is trying to find out? 

When an interviewer asks about short-term goals they don’t want to hear “I want to be in charge of the company in a year” – that’s grandiose and potentially unrealistic. They want to determine your level of commitment right now, or if your plans are realistic or fleeting. When we set short-term goals, we are showing our commitment to pursuing our objectives daily; chances are those objectives are realistic ones. It also means you are daydreaming less and pursuing pragmatic opportunities.


Here are examples of short-term goals:

  • Save for an expensive purchase
  • Arriving to work on time
  • Register for school
  • Join the military
  • Lose 5 pounds
  • Exercise daily
  • Eat healthy
  • Organize a closet, draw, etc.
  • Run a 5K Marathon
  • Get a job

Mid-Term Goals


Mid-term goals connect your immediate goal with your short-term and long-term goals. See your mid-term goals as a compass; its purpose is to guide you and keep you on track to achieving immediate goals you set now, and the long-term goals you hope to achieve.

Let’s say your short-term goal is to lose ten pounds in the next three months. How do you plan to lose those ten pounds? When you create a plan, when you implement steps leading to the initial aim of losing ten pounds, you are setting a mid-term goal.

The purpose of setting mid-term goals is to help you further define your short term and long-term objectives. They chart the process between your immediate goals and the ones that are more distant.


Here are examples of mid-term goals:

Short-term goal Mid-term goal
  • Lose ten pounds
  • Join a gym
  • Move to another state
  • Go on a job interview in that state
  • Go to College
  • Register for college
  • Spend the summer in Europe
  • Choose the country you want to start.

Long-Term Goals


Did you know when we set long-term goals, we never forget them? Our subconscious mind actively continues to make our intentions a reality. This type of goal can aid in the actions we take, and even contribute to our sense of purpose. Long-term goals are the type of goals we are most familiar with; consider these examples:

  • Buy a car
  • Buying a home
  • Start a family
  • Travel around the world
  • Learn to drive
  • Move to Paris
  • Help the needy
  • Learn to play an instrument

As you can see, they are the typical life goals we set, whether it’s having a child or buying a home. With long-term goals, we set them because we have these hopes and aspiration we want to see become a reality, and so we tell ourselves we are going to accomplish them.  

It’s easy to see how setting long-term goals can seem idealistic. Even with the risk of fantasizing about our objectives, long-term goals fuels our intentions. We should try to not form impractical or dreamy intentions, but to focus on goals that’s achievable.

The key to setting effective long-term goals is to use short term and mid-term goals as a measure for achieving long-term objectives. When we set long-term goals, we should keep in mind they won’t happen immediately and it must augment shorter, manageable steps we can do continuously.


Here are more examples of long-term goals:

  • Write a book
  • Retire early
  • Start a family
  • Learn a foreign language
  • Earn a degree
  • Start a business

Even though we set goals daily, it’s rarely conscious goals. Setting conscious goals is the first step to turn our invisible goals into visible ones. When we set conscious goals, we convey a few decisive messages. One of those messages is a belief in ourselves and what we can accomplish.


Consider the words of Earl Nightingale when he says: “People with goals succeed because they know where they are going.” Start today to create conscious goals that will guide you toward accomplishing your long-term objectives.


How do you set goals?

Share your thoughts below.

Series Navigation<< Setting Goals, What Everyone Should Know NowGoals we Set To Gain The Success We Want NOW >>