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SMART Goals And How To Set Them

SMART Goals 1

In this article we discover how get the most out of ourself by setting our goals using the SMART Goals system. What are these? Read On McDuff!

Whenever we approach a new year, many people set New Year's Resolutions. However most people never achieve the goals that they set at the beginning of the year. This is because they don't have a system to do so successfully.

One of the best ways to guarantee goal-setting success is to ensure that each of your goals or New Year's resolutions fits the S.M.A.R.T. formula. S.M.A.R.T. is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. When your goals have these characteristics, you are much likelier to achieve them.

Goal Setting Success

Setting short term, medium term, and long term goals for yourself is a key to success in your life. If there are things that you want to achieve or ways that you want to grow, setting goals as stepping stones is an important part of getting there.

SMART Goals 2

Follow this strategy to set your goals:

1. SMART goals are Specific.

This means that your goal should be numbers based, or have a specific goal in mind. A smart goal may be "Reduce my weight from 75 kg to 70 kg," or "Touch my toes without bending my knees." Both are specific goals without any vague phrasing left open to interpretation. 

  • The more specific your goals are, the clearer it will be when you finally achieve them.

  • Break your large goals into smaller short-term and medium-term goals, with each smaller goal phrased just as specifically in order for them to be attainable and achievable. 

2. SMART goals are Measurable.

This is another reason why smart goals are numbers based. To know whether or not you achieved a goal, you must be able to measure your progress. SMART goals are goals that you can track and measure that have a clear end or point of attainment. 

  • Being able to measure your progress is really important in goal setting and goal achievement. It helps you determine whether or not you're moving in the right direction, since you can clearly track and measure both positive and negative progress along the way.

3. SMART goals are Attainable (or Achievable).

Smart goals are goals that you can actually achieve. They're not extremely farfetched goals like "Lose 100 pounds in 90 days," because if there's no way to achieve the goal, why set it? SMART goals are goals that you're physically and mentally capable of achieving. 

SMART Goals - Target

4. SMART goals are Realistic.

SMART goals are not only attainable, but they are realistically attainable. They are a combination between a specific achievement that you can reach and a time frame that realistically coordinates with that achievement. 

  • For that reason, a SMART goal would be "Lose 10 pounds in 90 days," for a healthy weight loss of 1.5 to 2 kg per month, rather than "Lose 10 pounds this week."
  • If you question (or don't know) what is 'realistic', use a process of trial and error. Set a short term goal for 1 week and see what happens. If it works it works!

5. SMART goals are Timely.

Smart goals have time frames, and realistic ones at that. When you put a realistic time frame on your goal, it gives you something to work for. To simply "Lose 10 pounds," without a time frame lacks motivation. "Lose 10 pounds by my birthday" has a realistic time frame that gives you something to work for and a date for completion.

Bottom Line

Setting SMART goals is the best way to guarantee success at setting and achieving goals for what you want in life. By setting goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely, you can and will achieve the success you deserve!

Further Reading

Goals And Values:

(How To Live A Happy And Successful Life Part 3)