Mind Tools™ has a great article on their website about SMART goals. Some of their tips are listed below.
Specific: Your goal must be clear and well-defined. Vague or generalized goals are unhelpful because they don’t provide sufficient direction. Remember, you need goals to show you the way. Make it as easy as you can to get where you want to go by defining precisely where you want to end up.
Measurable: Include precise amounts, dates and other details in your goals so you can measure your degree of success. Without a way to measure your success you miss out on the celebration that comes with knowing you have actually achieved something.
Attainable: Make sure that it’s possible to achieve the goals you set. If you set a goal that you have no hope of achieving, you will only erode your confidence. Resist the urge to set goals that are too easy. By setting realistic yet challenging goals, you hit the balance you need. These are the types of goals that require you to “raise the bar,” and they bring the greatest personal satisfaction.
Relevant: Goals should be relevant to the direction you want your life and career to take. By keeping goals aligned with this, you’ll develop the focus you need to get ahead and do what you want.
Time-Bound: You goals must have a deadline. Again, this means that you know when you can celebrate success. When you are working on a deadline, your sense of urgency increases and achievement will come that much quicker.
I find it very helpful for me to write out my goals and keep them where I can see them. Life is never a straight line and will have its ups and downs. Having my goals visually accessible makes me more accountable and is a reminder of what I want to achieve.
Goals setting is an ongoing process, and goals will change with life situations. By following the SMART goals, you will have a better chance of achieving the goals you set!
Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!