Goal setting: It’s all in the Process

There are three types of goals you need to set: Process Goals, Performance Goals and Outcome Goals.

The beginning of a new hockey season is upon us and that means it is a great time to think about what you want to accomplish this year. In other words, it’s time to set some goals. Why is this important? Goals are a crucial mental training technique that, when the process is done properly, provide motivation, focus, confidence, the ability to overcome setbacks and the will to work hard day in and day out.

There is an enormous amount of scientific proof that athletes who set goals achieve more throughout their careers. Setting goals will help you determine where you currently are and create a plan to get you where you want to be. Goals allow you to set an outcome, make a plan, continually check your progress, and make the appropriate adjustments to stay on course. A clear example of the process of goal setting is using a GPS (or Google Maps) to help you find a location. You input your destination into your GPS, as you begin to drive it keeps you on course, but when you take a wrong turn the GPS will re-calculate your route and set you back on the right course to reach your destination. Goal setting does the same thing. As long as you know your desired destination you can keep re-calculating to ensure you reach it.

To accomplish this you have to be aware of the three types of goals you need to set: Process Goals, Performance Goals and Outcome Goals.


Of the three types of goals, your process goals are the most important. In hockey, they are strategically focused on the skills, techniques, strategies and behaviors (mental training) that will help you reach your performance and outcome goals. This is taking the time to choose skills (whether mental or physical) that you would like to see an improvement in, devise a plan that will allow you to work on that area and a schedule time to work on these skills. This is the hard work area of goal setting. This is when you get down and dirty by taking 100 draws a day, working on your footwork, trying to increase your speed or whatever skill you are trying to attain. Performance goals and outcome goals allow you to measure your work in this area and see the final results of your hard work. This is the area when the rubber hits the road. This is why your focus and energy must go into this area. You will create the habits that will raise the level of your game. By setting your process goals your self-confidence will increase, your anxiety will decrease, your concentration will improve and you will approach the daily grind with enthusiasm. It has been proven time and time again that your individual performance will improve quicker if you focus on the process rather than the performance and outcome.

There are three types of goals you need to set: Process Goals, Performance Goals and Outcome Goals . . .



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Enio Sacilotto

Enio Sacilotto is President of International Hockey Camps and operates the Mental Edge High Performance Training. Enio has 39 years of coaching experience (professional hockey in Europe and the WHL's Victoria Royals). Currently, he coaches at the Burnaby Winter Club Hockey Academy and the Croatian National Men's team. If you have questions or are interested in his services, contact Enio at [email protected] or call 604-255-4747

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