Get Personal. Get S.M.A.R.T.
Goals are personal.
We’ve all had one at some point.
Each of us has something we would like to accomplish. Whether it’s saving up to purchase a new car with cash or white water rafting in a foreign country, you need a plan of action.
Imagine your goals as if they were a road trip. Where would you like to go? What must you do to get there? Make a list — in order of priority — of what you need to get to your destination. Research the location you’re going to. Look at a map. Plan your route. Pack your bags and any necessary items you will need. Fuel up the vehicle and begin your trip!
First you take some surface streets to get to the highway. Once on the highway, you’re up to speed, making great time and then… TRAFFIC! So much for arriving ahead of schedule. You decide to make a pit stop and check the map for an alternate route. You take a different highway, a few more surface streets and a little extra time and you have arrived at your destination.
Goals are like a road trip. You need to know where you are, where you’re going, and a map of how to get there. A fantastic way to help you start goal planning is by using the S.M.A.R.T technique. SMART is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely.
Start by making your goal specific. “I want to eat healthier” isn’t specific enough. More specific would be, “I want to eat the recommended servings of fruits & veggies each day.” This will also make your goal measurable. You can write down or digitally track the exact servings you are eating daily.
Is this goal attainable for YOU? Assess your current habits. Do you eat fruits and veggies now and you’re just missing a few servings? Then yes, this may be attainable. If you do not eat any at all, this may not be attainable for you. A better goal would be to start of incorporating a serving or two per day, and slowly work your way up to the recommended servings.
Make your goals realistic. Are you willing and able to do the work required? Give yourself a reasonable time frame for completing your goal. It helps keep you motivated and continuing forward momentum.
Here are a few things to remember: Achieving your goals will not be one straight road to your destination. In fact, it’s possible you may change your destination all together. Don’t be afraid to make a pit stop. Sometimes it’s necessary to re-fuel and look at the map. More often than not, there’s more than one road that leads to the same place.
Don’t stop if you get discouraged! It’s a good possibility that you may run into traffic or road closures along the way. It would be silly to turn around and go home when you’re just a few minutes from your location.
What is it that YOU want to accomplish?
Remember, no goal is too small or too large. If the desire is in you, go for it!
“A goal is a dream with a deadline.” –Napoleon Hill