Orientation for goals, a Leadership guide to navigating towards results


 If you’re a leader with an increasing number of goals, objectives, projects and tasks landing on your desk then you’d benefit from taking a moment to consider how the science of applied positive psychology can help navigate you towards achieving results and realising your goals.

Spending time on goal identification, elevating willpower and developing options, or pathways, to achieving your goals is present-centred and future oriented and can help you and your team examine what is going on now with an eye toward prospective goals.

Goals are made up of three elements:

  1. The vision. Described in clear language with specific measures, priority and a timescale.
  2. Willpower. Also referenced as agency thinking this is the desire to take action and belief that I / We can…
  3. Waypower. Also referenced pathways. How many ways are there of achieving our goal. Having options allows you to cope with barriers and delays and promote a new pathway in the event of a derailment of plan A

Here are some ways to develop each element:


  • Increase awareness about important decisions regarding goals
  • Make goals that stretch you just a little bit further than you’ve been before
  • Build goals in groups: Personal, Professional, Relationships etc..
  • Focus on the top three goals first and take action every day
  • Set milestone markers to define achievements and progress
  • If the goal is important…turn off email for an hour

Willpower / Agency:

  • Positivity and willpower can be developed…listen to the voice that says “I Can…”
  • Plan for foreseeable roadblocks and take avoiding action now
  • Share and remember your prior successes…what made that success possible
  • Enjoy the journey and the people you travel with as much as the destination
  • Take care of your body, eat well, rest, move and be ready for when opportunity to progress your goal arises

Waypower / Pathways:

  • Make several paths for each of your goals, create options by discussing with someone
  • Which path is most likely to succeed…take that one first
  • Each pathway journey starts with a first step
  • If a pathway gets blocked or has speed bumps, consider your other options…are these now the easiest option
  • Look to those who have already made the journey and seek advice and guidance for your journey

Finally, one last tip which can be easily applied in any organisation. If you’re working towards a goal or perhaps just starting a new project ask yourself and your team “who is the most hopeful person we know?” Spending time, even moments, with high hope people is proven to develop goal vision, willpower and waypower…and it’s free, something we all have budget for.

If you’d like to know more about Positive Organisational Development or the science of applied positive psychology in organisations then give me a call on 0118 329 0162 , drop me an email to info@deanweller.co.uk or for more visit www.DeanWeller.co.uk.

Kindest regards,


PS – You might like to check out our new video series called ‘Introductions to Positive Psychology



Snyder, C.R. (2000) Handbook of Hope: Theory, Measures and Application. Academic Press



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