Goals. So much work. So hard to keep track of. Why should we even bother? For this very good reason.

What is a goal? No, not the kind we make in soccer. The other kind of goal, the one that drives us. Merriam-Webster’s dictionary defines a goal as ‘something you are trying to do or achieve.”

Our entire lives all we hear about is how we need to set goals. How we need to decide what to do with our lives. How we need to have a plan set. So why is it so important for us to be setting goals? Why do we keep getting this drilled into our heads day after day, year after year? It almost comes to a point where you ask yourself, why even bother setting goals?

The answer is… motivation.

Without setting goals what is your motivation to excel or hit the next milestone in your life. Motivation is the desire to do things. It is what drives us. It is our ambition. Without ambition or motivation we kind of go through life aimlessly and without purpose.

Here are the 4 reasons why we should be setting goals:

1. Goals give you purpose.

We are all working towards something. Whether it is a short-term goal like running a mile today or paying all your bills on time. Or a long-term, personal goal of getting the promotion you have been eyeing for the past few months or starting a family. These are the kind of things that give your life purpose.

I recently did a fitness challenge and part of this challenge I had to run a 5k. My goal was to do it in 25 minutes. I figured that was about an 8:20-mile average. It was that goal that drove me while I ran my 5k. It challenged me and kept me motivated not to give up when I felt like slowing down.

2. Goals help us move forward.

I find that when I don’t have anything to work towards, life gets stagnant. You end up going through the motions.

Right now I am working on my teaching credential. Obviously my goal is to become a teacher. This goal is helping move my life forward in a new career. I have more goals beyond just becoming a teacher. I want to do so much more with this profession beyond the classroom. These goals are driving me to move forward in my life.

3. Goals motivate you.

Think about it, what motivates you? Sitting on your couch watching Netflix doesn’t motivate you (or maybe it can — we’re not here to judge).

It can be as simple as wanting a nice new 4K Ultra HDTV to be able to watch Netflix on. In order for that to happen you need purchase one, but what if you don’t have enough money. Look, you just found a new goal! Your goal will be to save up to make that kind of purchase.

That motivation to obtain something you want is what will drive you to save money and put it towards that want.

4. Setting goals are good for your psyche.

Not only are goals good because they help motivate us to accomplish something, but they also give you a greater sense of satisfaction when you actually do accomplish them. Nothing feels better then achieving a goal.

Finishing my 5k in 25 minutes was a big accomplishment for me. I felt great knowing that I pushed myself and didn’t give up. Accomplishing that small goal gave me the confidence to keep pushing forward and working towards the larger goals I have in my life.

So what are some goals you are going to accomplish today?