10 Ways Goals Help You Stay Motivated in Your Career

To help you understand how goal setting can help you achieve success in your career, we asked business professionals and leaders for their insights. From using goals to win the battle to creating momentum, there are several ways that goals can help elevate your mindset to keep you motivated in your career.

Here are 10 reasons why setting achievable goals can lead to career success:

  • Use Goals to Win the Battle and the War
  • Chunk Your Goals to Make Them Manageable
  • Create Momentum With Small Goals
  • Consider Implementing SMART Goals
  • Remember That Short-Term Goals Mean Long-Term Success
  • Build Confidence With Small Wins
  • Stay on Track With Goals and Daily To-Dos
  • Celebrate Every Success
  • Start Small and Stay Motivated
  • Keep Goals Achievable and Flexible

Use Goals to Win the Battle and the War

When you look at goals, there are those that win the battle and those that win the war. Smaller goals can represent specific aspects of a project leading up to its completion. Such goals can be more easily attainable and a lot less overwhelming.

After achieving all of your smaller goals, your last step should be tackling your final goal. This goal will encompass all of the smaller ones but will actually complete the project in its entirety. When prioritizing your goals in this manner, you can work both efficiently and productively without feeling overcome with stress and anxiety.

Greg Gillman, MuteSix

Chunk Your Goals to Make Them Manageable

Professional goal setting is important. If you don’t have career goals, you won’t motivate yourself to attain your goals. Once you are in your career, you still need to apply pressure to yourself to excel and reach monetary and other types of rewards. If a large goal feels overwhelming, break the task down into smaller parts. This is called ‘chunking.’ By getting the smaller parts done, you end up finishing the entire task without feeling overwhelmed.

Janice Wald, Mostly Blogging Academy

Create Momentum With Small Goals

Large goals are comprised of small goals, so separating them makes the tasks seem less daunting for me. The key is to focus on the small goals that can be completed quickly and make me feel motivated to continue to the next task. Momentum is created, allowing me to successfully achieve my goal at a faster rate.

Tim Sharif, 310 Nutrition

Consider Implementing SMART Goals

Setting both small and large goals helps you become successful in your job and stay motivated in your career. You want to first set your long-term goals and ask yourself the following questions: 

  • Where do you want your life to go? 
  • Where do you see yourself in 20 years, and how can you get there? 

Once you have your long-term strategy in place, it is time to set your short-term goals. Plan out the next five years of your life using SMART goals. 

SMART goals are goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound or trackable. Setting goals under these parameters will yield the best results for you and your success. 

Jason Butcher, CoinPayments

Remember That Short-Term Goals Mean Long-Term Success

Creating small goals to achieve larger goals enables you to have wins and successes that can keep you motivated. Small goals allow you to achieve long-range goals in bite-size pieces. 

Desmond Tutu stated, “the only way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time.”  Some plans may take three to five years to complete and setting goal checkpoints along the way can motivate you to continue on your path to success. In addition, rewarding yourself when short-term goals are achieved helps reinforce your objective toward the big reward at the end.

Annette Harris, Harris Financial Coaching

Build Confidence With Small Wins

Mastery isn’t achieved overnight, and neither is a success. It may take years and even decades to make your way to the top, depending on what your goal is. By creating and successfully sticking to smaller goals, you get more adept at dealing with challenges and also gain confidence that pushes you towards the bigger goals.

Riley Beam, Douglas R. Beam, P.A.

Stay on Track With Goals and Daily To-Dos

Whether it’s a daily to-do list or a five-year plan, goals and daily tasks provide you with direction amidst the chaos of busy workdays. Specifically, it can become very easy to let work consume you, so much so that the job itself looms larger than your own professional career path or worse —  your happiness. 

However, by taking a macro and micro approach to goals, you will not only be more efficient with your time but also gain a newfound perspective that enables you to apply your daily work routine to the end result you yearn for.  Take control and chart your course. Success will follow as a result.

Lori Price, PixieLane

Celebrate Every Success

When team members have only large goals to pursue, it’s likely they’ll get discouraged or burnt out along the way. An annual goal means you only win once a year, and most people don’t have that kind of stamina. They need to feel successful consistently, and small goals make that possible.

Set long-term goals that align with the business and short-term goals that help you get there. That means you or your team will have energizing moments along the way. Just make sure you celebrate those wins!

Logan Mallory, Motivosity

Start Small and Stay Motivated

Whether you set huge or small goals, the fact that you’re taking action is powerful, and your future self will thank you. You can shoot for the stars or the troposphere (the first layer of the atmosphere). Whatever direction you choose, you’ll end up further than if you didn’t aim at all. 

Remember, you don’t have to choose one approach over another. Try both. Find the one that works best for you and stick with it. I prefer small goals, but I wouldn’t have understood that without first trying large ones. So set up a test for yourself. Set a small aim and see if it keeps you motivated. If not, aim high.

Veronica Miller, VPNOverview

Keep Goals Achievable and Flexible

I believe that the most important aspect of a small objective is that it is achievable and flexible. Because our goals frequently change throughout time, the last portion is especially vital. 


By setting a small goal, you give yourself a lot more flexibility. Because if you accomplish a small goal, you may want to repeat the goal the following month, modify it, or choose to abandon the goal completely.

Gerrid Smith, Joy Organics

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