We all know how difficult it can be to keep up with new goals and resolutions. The problems usually come down to a lack of self-discipline, personal planning, and time management. In order to follow through with your goals, you need to set out a solid plan. When setting goals, it is important to apply the SMART principles. All goals need to have the following attributes:
- Specific: Your goals need to be specific. This means that they should be laid out as clearly and target-driven as possible. A goal such as: “I want to get fitter” is not specific enough.
- Measurable: Making your goals measurable means that you will be able to chart your progress in objective terms. A New Year’s resolution such as, “I want to get fitter” again, is not a very good one. It is unclear and immeasurable. On the other hand, a more measurable goal would be: “I want to lose one pound”.
- Achievable: You need to ensure that the goals that you are setting is achievable, otherwise you will never succeed.
- Realistic: This means that there is no point setting unrealistic targets that you will not complete. For example, “I want to lose 10 pounds in 2 days” is unrealistic. Basically, if the targets you are setting are unrealistic, you will never complete them. Setting unrealistic goals will lower your morale, and increase the likelihood of complete failure. Many people give up progressively as they realize that their goals are never going to happen.
- Time Specific: Making your goals time specific is absolutely vital. For example: “I want to lose 10 pounds by my wedding in 6 months” and “I want to be able to run a marathon a year from now”, are both time-specific goal. If you do not specify your ending date, your focus can easily be lost.
By following these 5 SMART steps when you are setting your goals, you will have much more chance of succeeding in life. Each step of the SMART principle is very important. All the steps work together to create a solid framework that ensures that you are going forward with purpose and direction. There would be no point in setting goals that were not time specific. Similarly, there is no point in setting goals that are not measurable, as there is no way of gauging success. In other words, if your goal is not measurable, you will never know if you have completed it or not.
There are other considerations to take into account when trying to succeed in completing your life goals and resolutions. Two of the most important are time management and self discipline.
Once you have clearly set out your goals, it is important to organize your time effectively to ensure that you can fit other activities into your daily or weekly schedule. If your goal is “I want to exercise three times a week this year”, it is a good idea to try and actually allocate a specific time in your busy schedule to work out three times weekly; otherwise you will never be able to accomplish that goal. Here is a goal challenge for you. For the following 4 weeks, attempt to follow this rigorous exercise routine below.
It is important to try and remain disciplined with yourself, as your success lies in your own hands. If you are not disciplined and self-motivated, you will not get very far. Many people lack discipline. For instance, they sign up for a gym membership in January, and by March or April, they have stopped going, and have stopped exercising at home also. It is important to be rigorous with yourself, if you really want to achieve something difficult. But it is also important to maintain a positive attitude. If you get a little bit lazy, and stop doing what you set out to do, it is never too late to get disciplined and start again.
This guest blog was written by Abigail. She is a freelance writer and has also written articles on such subjects as Health directory and Insurance Directory Canada.