Why is goal setting important to you in your personal and career choice? Goal setting is an on going life long process that defines what direction an individual wants to go. Usually this is an idea or a wish for personal, business, relationship, etc. change. The SMART goal process is easy to apply.
Most people’s biggest problem in goal writing, is where to begin. The first step is to decide what area of your life you want to improve or change. Would you like to drink more glasses of water each day? Would you like to have your credit cards under control? Does your business endeavors need expanding? Take out a sheet of paper immediately. Quickly, write down some things that you would like to see happen in your life. Cover all areas of your life, personal, relationship, business, charity, etc. You may have several in one category and none in another. Keep writing until you cannot think of anything else, but keep the list handy, because once this process starts, it will keep flowing.
Everyone remembers setting a New Year’s resolution and two days into the New Year, the resolution is completely forgotten. The downfall for most people is that they do not write down their resolution. Pure and simple, the act of writing commits you. This commitment gives the goal setting power. With written objectives, everything gets accomplished.
There are tricks to goal setting that makes all aspirations possible. Apply the SMART principle.
Specific “Drink more water” is not specific. Drink 8 glasses of water per day, is.
Measurable You must be able to calculate results on your efforts. This goes back to being specific. By stating the desire to drink 8 glasses of water a day, you can record your progress.
Attainable Steps This is a very important aspect. If you are not a good water drinker, it doesn’t bode well for saying that tomorrow I will drink 8 glasses of day. However, 4 glasses a day would be a good start
Relevant The more relevant your goal is, the greater the chances for success. If drinking more water improves your health and makes you feel better, you will be more apt to succeed.
Time Bound There has to be a time frame. This binds specific and measurable together. Now you need to pick a time-frame to your goal.
The whole idea is to set yourself up for the win. Put SMART into action.
Now the next important step is to record what is actually happening each day. Create a chart, broken down into weeks, with each day listed and record each step towards your objective. Then reward yourself. This could be a smiley face or a check mark for each successful day and a bigger reward at the end of a successful week. Tracking your actions provides for accountability. Who are you accountable to? Yourself, of course. Along with accountablity comes the elation of accomplishment.
Will you have days that you do not accomplish your targeted level? Of course! The important part is to not beat up on yourself and give up. Reaffirm your commitment for the next day.
Goal setting is a lifelong process. Whether it is for personal or business reasons, the process remains the same. The completion of a goal prompts for another one. When you see the progress made, goal setting becomes a friend instead of something to avoid at all costs.