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Setting Goals: Tips for the Free and Fluid

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at George Mason University chapter.

Everyone creates goals. They’re how we achieve what we want in life. That should mean they’re easy to create, right? Wrong! True goals need to have thought behind them in order for them to come to fruition. There has to be a strategy, otherwise, a goal is just a dream, and dreams are often works of fiction. Here are some tips you could use to create successful goals.


This is the fundamental part of creating a goal. First, there has to be a dream involved. Some people dream of being famous, others dream of having a new car. The point is, it’s something they haven’t already obtained in life. Not all dreams are meant to be goals, but the ones that are doable should become goals for you if that’s what you truly want.


This is very important. Write down your goals in a journal, planner, iPad, or whatever utensil you use often. Once you’ve written it down, it becomes more real, more tangible. It also serves as a reminder of all of the goals you have and want to achieve. It’s an important artifact in the goal-making process.


If you want to achieve this goal at a certain point, you must create a timeline for yourself. This timeline can include all of your goals, especially if they support one another. The timeline can look any way you would understand it, but here’s one example:

1. Graduate – Spring 2022

2. Secure Job – Fall 2022

3. Secure Car – Spring 2022

4. Move Out/Secure Apartment – Fall 2023


The dream has occurred. It’s been written down as a goal, and you’ve created a timeline. Now what? Well, you must keep yourself accountable for achieving your goals. To do this, a strategy must be formulated. People don’t just graduate from school; they must be accepted into the program they want, pay for the program if required, and do well in order to get the degree. There are layers to goals. It’s almost as though it’s a ladder you have to climb until you reach the top. Coming up with strategies is an art form. They, too, must be written down, preferably in the same place you wrote down the goal.


Manifest your goal. Manifestation doesn’t happen without work, although most people believe it does. You can manifest your goals by remaining positive that they will occur, doing your best to climb up your strategy ladder, and being secure about it happening. Positive affirmations often help with manifestation. I recommend trading the word “can” with “will”: I will do it! I will achieve it! It will be done!

check off

When you achieve your goals, check them off the list. Simple. Another task to do when checking off is to make sure that the rest of your goals still align with what you want after achieving what you have. Your dreams may change due to the journey you’ve been through, and that’s okay.

Have at it! Chase your dreams and believe in your ability to achieve them.

Zeairah Webb

George Mason University '22

Zeairah is a senior at George Mason University. She spends most of her time reading, doing homework, and watching Netflix. Her favorite color is yellow and her favorite animals are dogs. She is double majoring in marketing and management with a minor in journalism with hopes of one day studying intellectual property law. She aspires to be many things such as a legal consultant/attorney, a creative director for Disney, or a travel/lifestyle writer for a magazine.