Setting your Goals the SMART way…
Tips to make your goals achievable (or, at least, increase your probability of success)
1) Write YOUR GOALS Down And Share Them
According to the research by Dr. Gail Mathews, at Dominica University, her studies show that if you write your goals down, you increase your probability of achieving them by 44%.
If you share them, you increase your chances of success by 78%.
TIP: Start using the Workbook here!
2) Keep Your Goals To a Minimum
Too many people put too much on the table even before starting. When that happens, people become overwhelmed and they start to lose focus, because when everything becomes a priority, nothing is a priority.
We often recommend keeping goals to a maximum of three, at least per Quarter, to be revisited periodically as part of the routine.
Big goals tend to have the habit of breaking down into many smaller goals, and if you set more than three goals when that happens you can end up back in the situation where you have too many goals.
3) Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals
Paul J. Meyer, businessman and founder of Success Motivation International, describes SMART goals in his book, “Attitude Is Everything: If You Want to Succeed Above and Beyond.”
Perhaps this is the most important and common shared concept when talking about goals.’
Set your goals as one specific desire. For example, saying that you want to be a good writer is vague. Saying that you want to be a best-selling author of science fiction is more specific.
Your goal should be clear and specific, otherwise you won’t be able to focus your efforts or feel truly motivated to achieve it. When drafting your goal, try to answer the five questions below:
1. What do I want to accomplish?
2. Why is this goal important?
3. Who is involved?
4. Where is this goal located or to be achieved?
5. Which resources or limits are involved?
TIP: For example, a general goal would be “I want to get fit.” A more specific goal would be “I want to start a gym membership or this training program and work out X days a week”
It’s important to have measurable goals, so that you can track your progress and stay motivated. Assessing progress helps you to stay focused, meet your deadlines, and feel excited when getting closer to achieving your goal.
A measurable goal should address questions such as:
· How much?
· How many?
· How will I know when it is accomplished? (see Tangible later)
TIP: from the example above, add “and lose X pound of body fat every week” or “reduce my body fat % by X% on monthly”
Your goal also needs to be realistic and attainable to be successful. In other words, it should stretch your abilities but still remain possible. When you set an achievable goal, you may be able to identify previously overlooked opportunities or resources that can bring you closer to it.
An achievable goal will usually answer questions such as:
· How can I accomplish this goal?
· How realistic is the goal, based on other constraints, such as financial factors?
TIP: Set Goals that are under YOUR control. For instance, there are goals that could be “influenced” by you but are NOT fully in your power. For instance, “Get promoted” depends on other’ decision (i.e recruiter, manager). Setting “Get the experience, work harder and smarter and grow my know-how attending XYZ courses etc” depends on you.
This step is about ensuring that your goal matters to you, and that it also aligns with other relevant goals. We all need support and assistance in achieving our goals, but it’s important to retain control over them. So, make sure that your plans drive everyone forward, but that you’re still responsible for achieving your own goal.
A relevant goal can answer “yes” to these questions:
· Does this seem worthwhile?
· Is this the right time?
· Does this match our other efforts/needs?
· Am I the right person to reach this goal?
· Is it applicable in the current socio-economic environment?
Every goal needs a target date, so that you have a deadline to focus on and something to work toward. This part of the SMART goal criteria helps to prevent everyday tasks from taking priority over your longer-term goals.
A time-bound goal will usually answer these questions:
· What can I do six months from now?
· What can I do six weeks from now?
· What can I do today?
TIP: the T is sometime translated into “Tangible” A goal is tangible when you can experience it with one of the senses: taste, touch, smell, sight or hearing. In other words, you must be able to feel and sense what it will be like when your goal is accomplished. You can add this information to your Goal so you will really “know” when you’ll reach it.
So, let’s start the NEW YEAR with good intentions but also with actionable items, fundamental part of the ThinkFit Productivity System. Stay tuned for more!
Affiliate Disclosure: some of the articles I publish may contain affiliate links. I am linking these companies and their products because of their quality and relevance and not merely because of the commission. The decision is yours, and whether or not you decide to buy something is completely up to you.