Goal Setting 101
I hope you all had a wonderful New Year! Now that the celebrating is over, let’s chat about how to make those New Year’s goals a reality! I say “goals” rather than “resolutions” because a goal is something that requires you to work towards your desired outcome. It is more that just saying “I will do…” make sense? Believe me… I know just how daunting it can be ringing in the new year and reflecting on all of the things that you thought you would accomplish the year before but never did.
I am guilty of making goals for myself that are not attainable, and I essentially just set myself up for failure/disappointment. SO how can we work together to make our goals happen? As “high school” as it may sound… following the “SMART” goals method really does help!
For those of you who have never heard of “SMART” goal setting, it is essentially an acronym that is designed to help you make more achievable goals. Now each letter in this acronym can have several different meanings, but I am going to share the version that I find works best for me:
S - Specific
M - Meaningful
A - Attainable
R - Rewarding
T - Trackable
…these are just the ones that I like to use to set my goals, because I find that they fit best with my overall way of thinking, but research the different variations to find what best suits you!
So let’s break this down.
Specific : For me, making a specific goal for my self is the first step in the goal-setting process. I find it very easy to get carried away when setting goals for myself, and I can easily get lost in a sea of different thoughts, ideas, and plans. What EXACTLY do you want to accomplish? Can you write it down in one sentence or does it require an explanation to make sense? If you can write out your goal in one, coherent sentence, then it is more likely that you have a good grasp on what you want to accomplish.
Meaningful : Now, I know that many people use “Measurable” in this part of their goal-setting process, however, I prefer to substitute that for “Meaningful.” I believe in the importance of spending my time doing meaningful things, because if you enter into something without any meaning, then why are you spending your time on it? If you can find some form of meaning in everything you do, then you will feel so much more fulfillment from accomplishing it. Are you passionate about this goal? Will it have a positive outcome on you or someone else in the world?
Attainable : I will just come right out and say it. I dream BIG, and sometime that means that I hope to achieve something that is just out of reach. I am by no means trying to say that if something seems challenging that you should deem it unattainable and move on to something easier. That is the OPPOSITE of what I am trying to say here. Instead, I am saying that you need to make sure that something is within your power to happen. For example, if my goal was to be the Queen of England by 2020…that is something that is completely out of my control as I am not a part of the royal family and therefore will never be Queen of England.
Rewarding : What will the outcome of your goal be? Will it bring you happiness? Joy? Fulfilment? If the answer is no, then it is not a goal worth having. Life really is short, so if you are going to spend time and energy working towards accomplishing something, it should be something that will be rewarding to you, and add more positivity to your life.
Trackable : In terms of making your goals a reality, ensuring that they are trackable will make ALL the difference! For instance, can you schedule daily/weekly/monthly check-ins to ensure you are on track? Can you make a chart and see how your performance progresses? Being able to check-in with yourself along the journey and make sure that you are on the right path to achieving your goals will be a HUGE help. The more you check-in the more you are thinking about that end-goal and the more likely you are keep your goal at the fore-front of your thoughts and therefore spend more time working towards it!
SO when you are setting your New Year’s goals, I want you to consider the above rambling, and to ask yourself these questions:
Is your goal something that you have control over?
Can you achieve it on your own or do you need help from others?
Will your goal make you/your life better in some way? If so, how?
Thanks for reading and let me know your goals in the comments down below!