As a coach, you need to have a strategic plan to help your students achieve their desired level of performance and personal goals. Each year, you should ask them “What are your goals for this season?” If players haven’t taken the time to set them, there is a good chance they will be beaten by someone who has.

Goal setting is not easy to do, why? Firstly, there are two common methods that most people attempt and neither of them works:

  • Realistic Goal Setting;
  • Big-Sky Goals.

In the steps below, I’ll take you through the Goal Setting method we use within the Elite Performance System (EPS) – a strategy developed by 1976 Olympic Gold Medalist Lanny Bassham that I’ve translated to all sports. We currently have a twenty Division 1 NCAA Universities that have adopted the EPS method of training and mindset preparation. I encourage you to share this with your student athletes and help them obtain their goals at each step:

Goal Getting System

1. Determine a goal worth trading your time for – For perspective, Olympians set goals worth trading their “life” for.

2. Decide when you want it – You must set the exact day and date you want to accomplish this goal. This helps you formulate a plan to achieve them.

 3. List the pay value – Why do you want this goal? List all the reasons that achieving this goal is important to you. Make sure you set a goal that’s big enough to be life/performance-changing.

4. Honestly evaluate the obstacles in your way – You must be very specific about your obstacles. If you don’t list all the obstacles that you need to manage to accomplish your goal, they will turn into barriers. Barriers will keep you from accomplishing your goals, but you can overcome an obstacle.

5. What is your plan to get your goal – Goals with a written plan have a much better chance of being reached.

6. Evaluate your plan before you proceed – Ask questions of yourself. Do I believe my plan will work? Do I believe I can work the plan? Is the prize worth the price? This is the most important step in the goal-setting process. Ask yourself, “Is the pay-value worth the price I have to pay for it?”

7. Schedule your plan – Scheduling is a vital art of the planning process. Put your plans on a calendar.

8. Start Now! – You are ready to go. Begin right away and don’t hesitate.

9.Prior to reaching your goal always set a new one to takes its place. – This will keep you on track and accomplish greater things and elevate your performance.

10. Hold on to the end of trade up – Do not be surprised if, on your way to one goal, you discover another. But never give up –trade up! Finish the first goal and then move on to the next.

Shawn Humphries is the founder and director of Elite Performance Systems (EPS). The goal behind EPS is to help coaches and athletes to define the steps needed to obtain their goals. Shawn helps these coaches and athletes implement measurable marks so that each goal is trackable to completion.