This post may contain affiliate links which helps make this site possible and allows me to create for you! You can read more about it on my disclosure page here.

Why You Should be Writing Down Your Goals

“Write down every single idea you have, no matter how big or small.”


– Richard Branson

In his book What They Don’t Teach You in The Harvard Business School, Mark McCormack references a Harvard study from 1979-1989. At the beginning of the study in 1979 the subjects of the study – recent Harvard MBA graduates – were asked:


“Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?”


  • 3% had written goals and plans

  • 13% had goals but weren’t written down

  • 84% had no specific goals at all


After 10 years, in 1989, the researchers evaluated the difference in earnings among the Harvard MBA graduates. They found that:


  • The 13% with goals that weren’t written down were on average earning twice that of the 84% who had no goals. 

  • The 3% with clear written goals were on average EARNING TEN TIMES AS MUCH as the rest of their previous classmates.


Only 10 years after graduation the group who had clear, concise goals that were written down were earning 10 times as much as the other 97% who didn’t take the time to write down their goals. 


Having a clear understanding of your goals is key to ensure you will accomplish everything you desire. If you don’t have clarity with your goals it’s as if you are running up and down a soccer field with no net. You can go through life running the motions but if you don’t have a clear goal or a clear net to score on, what’s the point?


Update: Some believe this Harvard Business Study to be an ‘urban myth’ after extensive reviews of research literature. 


However, one Dominican University Study supported the ‘findings’ of the Harvard Business Study. Gail Matthews at Dominican University found that writing down goals significantly increases the accomplishment of goals due to accountability and commitment.


Make it a habit to write your goals down every day, in the morning and the evening.