Gaining clarity about your wants and priorities is essential to success. It’s time to get out of your head and go from fuzzy ideas and wishful thinking to achievement. Setting goals helps you clarify what you want and what you need to do to accomplish it.
Write your goals (on paper or electronically). Putting your goals in writing is the primary action step toward making them realities. You will be able to see and celebrate your progress. Clearly written goals help you stay focused so don’t just write any old goal, take it a step further and write SMART goals.
SMART goals are:
(1) Specific – A specific goal has a much greater chance of being realized than a general goal.
(2) Measurable – Decide what criteria you will use to measure your progress and determine if you are staying on track
(3) Achievable – Goals should be attainable with available resources and important enough that you will stick with them
(4) Realistic – Goals should stretch you and challenge but be reachable
(5) Timely – Commit to a time frame or deadline
To achieve your goals:
1. Make a plan – create action steps for each goal
2. Commit – be willing to make sacrifices and take calculated risks.
3. Prioritize goals – decide what should be done first then create benchmarks and milestones
4. Review your goals daily – Continually remind yourself of your goals and think about how you will feel when you achieve them
5. Take Action – work your plan; get moving
6. Revisit, evaluate, and if you need to, adjust your goals
7. Find someone to encourage you and hold you accountable
Life will always have challenges – expect them and don’t let them derail you. Two other benefits to creating and writing SMART goals is that you train your mind to notice things and opportunities that are related to your goals and because you have a plan you are less likely to become discouraged when obstacles come your way. Do not give up on your goals.
Nicki Sanders, Chief Visionary Officer of Packaged For Success, helps both youth and adults discover their personal power, dream big, and achieve success on their own terms. Ms. Sanders is an experienced trainer, group facilitator, and program manager who holds a Master’s degree in Social Work. Ms. Sanders has over fifteen years of direct experience with diverse populations in residential, school-based, and community based agencies.
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