We all know what a goal is, but some of us may not be familiar with a stretch goal. A stretch goal is a goal that might be just out of our reach. It is realistic at first glance but a little beyond what we may normally strive for and readily know that we can achieve. Stretch goals are important to bringing out the best in all of us. Many of us do not know what we are truly capable of until we are asked to get outside of our comfort zone and obtain something a little loftier than what is normal.
My boss recently told me that I had to take a specific continuing education course for my job if I wanted to be promoted. I told him that I wanted to have the class completed before my next annual performance review in July. The problem is that that timetable may be tough to complete between now and then. He told me that it would be okay if I did not quite make it before July. He said that I could use the class and the required preparation as a stretch goal. I have to admit that I got a little upset when he told me that. I know that I will be a little crunched for time, but I want the prestige that comes with this special class in my life of work. I am bound and determined to complete the class before my review now that the gantlet has been laid down.
Stretch goals are a wonderful tool to finishing what may seem impossible at first sight. What is your stretch goal? Is it paying off a mountain of credit card debt? Is it paying off your mortgage years in advance? Is it saving enough to retire at 55? I can remember being laughed at in college when I told one of my professors that I wanted to retire to a golf course at the ripe old age of 42. Talk about a stretch goal, right? Stretch goals are great to help you reach your dreams and keep you motivated.