New Year’s Resolutions are undoubtedly the most broken ‘goals’ we set for ourselves. Why? Well, aside from the fact that they are usually made on the spur of the moment, quite a few celebratory drinks in – they simply aren’t SMART: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely.
SMART goals help you develop a clear idea of what you want to achieve and how best to do it. The clearer the vision, the easier it is to see and feel the goal and, ultimately, to accomplish it.
Specific goals are clear and detailed. They answer the following questions: What do I want to achieve? Why do I want to achieve this? Who is involved? Where does the goal take place? When will it happen?
You need to be able to measure your goal, so you know when you have achieved it. Ask yourself, How will I know when it is accomplished?
Attainable goals are goals within reach. Ask yourself, How can I achieve this goal?
Relevant goals are meaningful goals. If a goal is relevant, it is worth being pursued. Ask yourself, Why do I want to achieve this goal?
It is important to give goals a time frame. This way you can plan the steps needed to achieve them and the time it will take for each step. By putting a timeframe on each goal, you’re also motivating yourself to achieve it, because you set yourself a deadline to work towards. Ask yourself, When will I complete this goal? What can I do today to get started?
With your SMART goals in place, take a moment to consider the challenges, setbacks and blockages you may face while achieving these goals. This process is just as significant as setting goals, as when you do find yourself facing these challenges you won’t be deterred. Instead you will be ready and prepared to work through them, then onwards to conquer your goal.