SMARTY Goals Keep You on Track

Every year I spend a lot of time developing my resolutions or “game plan” for the coming year.  It has become such an integral part of the my holiday vacation that I get anxious when I’m not working on it.  I use personal and professional goals in a variety of aspects – spiritual, physical, and intellectual to help me reach my vision.

My favorite format for goal setting is one that I have taught for two decades.  I picked it up along my travels and have applied my own twist to it.  It keeps me in line and I think it helps newcomers to the goal setting process, too:
Part 1 – Specific – is the goal specific and precise?  A goal too broad becomes a vision and while it is an important part of your motivational process – it isn’t a goal.  Goals are stepsaccomplished on the way to your vision.
Part 2 – Measurable – can the progress in your goal be measured?  How and when do you plan to measure it?  Can you keep a progress chart – visual aids are critical to your motivation.
Part 3 – Accountable – do you have a partner in this?  Is there someone or group who can keep you on track?  encourage you?  admonish you?  celebrate with you?
Part 4 – Reachable or Reasonable – is this goal possible? healthy?  If it isn’t possible it will become a “de-motivator.”
Part 5 – Time frame or timely – is the goal possible within a reasonable time frame?  In fact most experts agree that goals need to be completed within 30 days or you lose interest.  Does that mean you lose all 20 pounds in 30 days?  Of course not, but a 20 pound weight loss goal can be broken down into more specific and reasonable goals.
Part 6 – Why?  why is the goal important and how does it relate to the big picture?  is it an important part of your vision?  is it worth it?  what are the rewards?
Good luck on your New Year Resolutions and let’s keep the American dream alive!