4 tools to help you to define your goals – Jana Dvorak – Coaching

4 tools to help you to define your goals

Driving your own life isn’t easy. Everybody can succumb to the influence of others and stop prioritising themselves. These 4 tools can stop you from waking up one day and finding out you’re not in charge of your own life anymore.


The wheel of life

What it’s used for:

This tool is a great way to map your current situation in 8 different areas of your life. It helps you to realise where you are and where you want to go.


How to work with it:

Create a wheel and split it to 8 parts. Each part represents some important aspect of your life. Label each category.

Here’s some examples:

  • Health.

  • Career.

  • Family.

  • Relationships.

  • Social life.

  • Personal development.

  • Money.

  • Fun.

  • Traveling.


Every person has different priorities, choose the one which resonates with you. You don’t need to follow the list above, you can choose your own categories.

The middle of wheel is 0, the edge is 10.

0 means that you feel unsuccessful, or unhappy in the area.

10 you are very happy and successful.

Decide how you’re doing in each area and mark it down on the circle.

Where is your life out of balance? What have you been prioritising without realising.

Next, you need to ask yourself what score you’d love to get in each area. At what level would you be satisfied?

Compare the differences.

For example, on social life, I only score a 4. What should I do about it? I set myself some goals; once a week meet with friends for coffee, once per month go for a trip with a close friend, every other week invite somebody over for dinner.



You find out what categories are important for you. You find your current situation and your desired situation.



You can get overwhelmed and try to plan to achieve all goals in all categories at the same time.


Brilliant square

What it’s used for:

This tool focuses on 4 different areas of your life. Health, relationships, wealth and personal development. These are the most important areas of your life. Balance between these areas leads to happiness.

What defines each area?

Health: Fitness, mental health, stress level, sleeping, and eating habits.

Relationships: Family, friends, colleagues, and how you handle strangers.

Wealth: Do you have enough money for regular expenses? Do you have enough money to follow your dreams? What emotions does money invoke in you?

Personal development: Personal and career goals, self-awareness, continuous learning, maximizing your potential.


How to work with it:

Create two lines which are at right-angles to each other.

Score 1 at the edge and 5 closest to the center.

Now score yourself: 1 means that it’s excellent, 5 means that the situation is very bad.

Connect your scores.

If your life is in balance then the final figure should look like a square.

The square may also be larger or smaller, this depends on your expectations of life. If the square is misshapen, it suggests your life is out of balance.



It focuses on 4 main areas of your life. You can see conflicts between the most important areas. Unbalance in one area can have negative effects in other areas as well.



It doesn’t go into detail, and doesn’t cover some potentially important areas, such as travel for example.


Vision board

What it’s used for:

This tool helps you visualise your dreams. I create one every year to depict my goals and keep me motivated.


How to work with it:

Find relevant pictures which remind you of your goals and put them together onto one sheet (digitally or manually). Keep the vision board in a visible place which you’ll see often, e.g. your desk or your fridge. Remind yourself daily what you want to achieve. Do it together with your children. It’s great to become their role model.



You can remind yourself of your goals on a daily basis. This has a great effect on your subconscious.



It can lead only to goals which are fun for you. It doesn’t support self-reflection in different aspects of your life.


5 life directions


An example: Shredded and healthy

  • I drink alcohol time to time.

  • I don’t connect alcohol with relaxing.

  • I eat sweet stuff maximum 2x per week.

  • I eat healthy 80:20.

  • I practise kickboxing 2x per week.

  • I practise yoga poses 5x per week.

  • I try a new MMA.

  • I play volleyball 1x per week.

  • I go training kickboxing for 3 months to Thailand.

  • I will learn how to surf.

  • I sleep around 6-8 hours per night.

  • I’ll get shredded.

  • I work on my positive mindset.

  • I’m happy.

  • I have a lot of energy.


What it’s used for:

This is used for your long-term life strategy. It helps you to define as many goals as possible without a time limit.


How to work with it:

Use a notebook or your computer.

List out 5 of your dreams, e.g. ‘settle-down’, ‘see the world’, ‘lead a successful company’, ‘shredded and healthy’.

For each direction, write down goals which would help you become more successful in the area. You can use present or future tense.

There’s no time limit for achieving the direction. The tool helps you avoid getting distracted over the years. Some of your goals will stop being valid over time, as circumstances or your priorities change. Find some time each month to review it.

If you have a goal that’s not compatible with any of your listed dreams, ask yourself if it’s really what you want to achieve? Alternatively, if you have a direction with few goals, is this the correct direction for you?



It helps you to keep an eye on your life over the long-term.



It can stop you from trying new things if you are too strict about your directions. Without an action plan and regular reviews they can just stay dreams.


Where should I start?

If you are not sure if you need goals in your life, please, read this article.

Where should you start? It depends on your particular situation.

The wheel of life is great to know your current situation and where you want to improve. It’s probably the easiest tool to start with.

Brilliant square is great in the moment when you feel unhappy and you need to work out what’s causing it.

The vision board is best for visualisation and daily motivation over periods of several months. 5 life directions is the best for monitoring your progress and long-term life strategy.

I use all these tools myself to help guide me through various parts of my life.