SMART GOALS

Two months of the year down, ten more to go. How are your resolutions going? If you haven’t made any yet, it’s not too late to start! When setting goals, it’s important that you’re properly outlining and defining them. Did you know there’s a goal setting system called SMART? Today we’ll be talking about setting SMART goals and why it’s important!

SMART GOALS

SMART goals aren’t just goals of intelligence—SMART is an acronym! It stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time bound. When setting a goal, it’s important to make sure that it falls under each of these. Here are some tips for doing that:

  • Specific: Do you know exactly what you want to accomplish? For example, don’t say you want to lose weight. Set specific pounds to lose, workout sessions each week, or diet goals.
  • Measurable: This one follows closely along with Specific. If you aren’t able to measure your progress, how will you know when your goal has been achieved? Track how many days you can follow a meal plan. Write down how many inches you lose. Oftentimes, measuring your progress can be motivation in itself!
  • Achievable: As much as we’d like to believe we can do anything, it’s important to remember to keep your goal realistic. For example, you can set a goal to lose 8 pounds in a month, but 100 pounds in a month would be setting yourself up for failure.
  • Relevant: It’s important when setting a goal to make sure that it aligns with what you want for your life. For example, if you want to be a doctor, you wouldn’t want to waste your time or money getting a business degree. While this example is a little more far-fetched, it’s important to align your plans with what you want your life to ultimately look like!
  • Time bound: Set a goal that has a specific amount of time for it to be accomplished. Otherwise, you won’t get anything done! Make sure that your timeline is realistic, but pressing enough that you’ll want to accomplish it.
HOW TO SET THEM

To set a SMART goal, start by thinking of the big picture. What are you wanting to accomplish in the end? Then from there, you can get more specific. Break your big goal into smaller tasks. That way you know exactly what steps to take to get where you want to go. Plus, by breaking it into smaller tasks, you’ll be less likely to get overwhelmed.

Here’s an example. If you have a goal to lose 50 pounds, start with your workout routine. You could set a goal saying, “I want to work out three times a week for the entire month of March.” This is something that is specific, easily tracked, accomplishable, relevant to your entire goal, and something that is set in specific time parameters.

FOLLOWING UP

When you set a goal, always make sure to come back after your allotted time to see what you were able to accomplish. Even if you didn’t complete your goal, take a look at things. What did you achieve? What can you do better next time? What are the next steps for your overall goal? Take a few minutes to make sure you’re on track for the big picture. Then, keep it going! Now’s not the time to get stagnant.

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