In the gym, I tend to hear a lot of people say what their "goals" are, but without getting too deep I can tell that they don't actually know what really setting goals is. For one, when I'm uncertain of something, I study it to better understand it. I too have set many vague goals in my life but until I started setting appropriate goals, they were seldom achieved.
Many people know of the term S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, risky/realistic, time-sensitive) goals, but few know the four areas in life where goals must be set. Those areas are; Financial, Relationships, Contribution, and Physical. I feel in life it is impossible to achieve balance in all these areas, but the desire for balance is key. You must know where you want to be financial, how you want your relationships with those around you to be, how are you contributing to society, and how you want to feel/look physically.
Here is a random example of a SMART goal for Physical. "By June 15, 2015, I will have achieved 15% body fat by running for 1 hour at 3 pm every Mon/Wed/Friday, attending a gym class for 1 hour at 530pm every Tues/Thurs, and reducing my caloric intake by 7000 a week, starting Monday." Often when people think of something they really would like to get done, but can't figure out why they never actually do it, it comes down to core values. If something is not at the top of your value list, you're going to have a really hard time making it happen.
Here is an exercise I like because it can be a real eye-opener. It's called the DeMartini Values Assessment. Go through this exercise, and write down three answers for each question.
Now, go through those answers and you'll see some patterns. If you go through and see "kids" or "family" repeating, write down family, and mark a tally. Go through all 39 answers and group answers together. So you should end up with 39 tallies. Then, you're going to place each of those groups in order depending on the number of times it came up. This is a great way to see what your top values are. Often something like "family" could show up not as number one, even though you think family is the most important to you, but when you connect that say "money" is at the top is because you need the money to be free and have more time with your family, so they're actually connected. There are ways as well to move things up on your values list and other things down, but that's far too much for me to express here.
As far as time management here is a pretty quick tool for anybody that wants to get something done but thinks "I don't have the time." There are 168 hours in a week. I want you to write down how many hours to spend on your main-time consumers. For instance, if you sleep 7 hours a night, write down 49 (7hrs a night, 7 days a week). You're going to do this with everything, the time you spend eating, working, etc. After you've totaled your main-time consumers, you might just find out you really have a WHOLE LOT of time that you're not utilizing. So, get a calendar, and make the time! I know not everyone does these things and not everyone needs to. But, if you're stuck in a rut and can't figure out why the things you need to do aren't getting done, try a few of these techniques! I wish you the best and stay motivated!