Goal Setting Part 2

As promised in Part 1, I am tracking my progress toward achieving 50 downloads in 1 month at Dreamstime by 7/31/2008.

The first two months of my challenge have been successful. In January I set a personal record with 28 downloads, more than double my average. This came on the strength of 91 new accepted uploads. February was even better, as I received 35 downloads after adding 20 additional images. For the first time since I started this personal challenge, it is now apparent that I will achieve my goal. I only need to continue striving forward. Now I want to help you achieve your goals.


Strongly consider using the SMART concept of goal setting. The concept stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely.

A specific goal spells out exactly what it is you will achieve, and when you will achieve it. There is no room for being vague. You draw a line in the sand and you dare anyone to stop you from crossing it.

Let's say you just spent the last 2 months eating tarts. Now your once perfect figure is more of a perfect circle. You decide it is time to lose a lot of weight, and your determination is sky high. If you are like 9 out of 10 people, you will simply plan to "lose some weight," and under achieve. Your odds for success increase markedly when you use the SMART concept.

You might write your goal, "I will lose 15 pounds of fat by June 1, 2008."

Now you have a specific goal, and it is completely measurable. Is it attainable and realistic? It should be. A good rule of thumb for losing fat is about 1 pound to 1.5 pounds per week, though for short periods you can lose 2-3 pounds per week. So in 3 months, 15 lbs of fat loss is both challenging and attainable. By stating an actual date for this goal to be achieved, you have created a goal which is timely. Another part of the timeliness and specificity of your goal is the "why" of the date. Since June 1 is the unofficial beginning of swimsuit season, you might choose this as your reason.

While I continue to update my progress at Dreamstime, I challenge each and every one of you to choose a personal goal. Make it something meaningful, then publicly state your goal. Ensure others hold you accountable. You want others to help drive you forward.

The Sky is the Limit

The world opens up to you when you set specific goals. Suddenly what once seemed so far away begins to come within reach. Before long you are achieving success, and moving on to even loftier goals. So much of your success rate will be determined by your specificity. You must know exactly what it is you will achieve, when you will achieve it, and why it is important to you.

The concept of proper goal setting is far reaching. Much more than I can hope to cover in a blog article. I suggest using Google to search on the topic of goal setting, and learn all of the neat tricks you can utilize to inspire you.

This beautiful picture comes from a new friend of mine, Lev Dolgachov. Lev is without question one of the most talented image creators on Dreamstime. More importantly, Lev is a completely selfless individual, willing to help aspiring photographers to become better artists.

Photo credits: Syda Productions, Paul Cowan.

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