Brain Food: Your Route to the Top - Fulfil your goals

Start with overall goals. These may need help from others and depend on things you have no control over; eg, the Queen's goals might include improving the Royal family's reputation.

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Last Updated: 22 Jan 2016

The best goals are expressed positively. More support for the monarchy rather than less support for a republic.

Support your goals with objectives. Develop a series of aims that concentrate on things that are largely up to you to do.

Look for measures of success. The percentage of the UK population who believe the monarchy is good value for money is a hard measure, but unprompted positive remarks from a range of opinion-formers could be just as useful.

Agree on targets that stretch but don't strain. Define missed goals, successes, mighty successes and 'you must be joking'. Achieving a better reputation than last year is realistic; than any other European head of state is a stretch; than Nelson Mandela may be a step too far.

Discussion is essential. Goals that are imposed or agreed in isolation disappear without trace. Those that are discussed and agreed are more likely to motivate and less likely to be changed.

Imagine what a great month or year would be like. Worry about how to achieve it later.

Publish goals. Others will be more likely to help you achieve them and it will be easier to see where various individuals' efforts overlap or contradict.

Revisit your goals regularly. It's easy to forget what some of them are; a regular check will help you keep on track.

Circumstances change. If goals are to be useful, they'll need to change too. Do this collaboratively. 'I don't mind if the goalposts are moved so long as I'm the one who moved them.'

The Mind Gym, www.themindgym.com.

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