SMART ways to keep your goals

Keeping promises isn’t always easy, especially when we make those promises to ourself. When we set goals, what we are really doing is making promises to ourselves. How then do we make sure we keep them when we don’t feel like it? And sometimes I do not have the same tenancy to keep my promises to myself as I would to someone else. The SMART way is a systematic way to make sure that when you set your goals you have the means to get it done.

Specific

If you have read my post ‘why I decided to not have the quote on quote new year resolutions‘, I briefly touched on it. Sometimes I have a very broad idea of where I see myself in the future. But that is the overall goal and it changes every now and then as I get older and my priorities shift. But in a nutshell, the first part of setting your is to be very specific. One of my goals is to improve my physical fitness. But that is very general. Here is how I make it specific.

  1. My goal is to be able to run a mile and a half in 12 minutes. The last times I timed myself running a mile and half, I completed it in 12minutes 45 secs.
  2. Here I have my goal, but I also have something to measure it against, to see where I was and where I want to go. Also if I can make the time, I know that my physical fitness has improved.

Measurable

There is no point setting a goal you cannot measure. How do you determine that you have completed the goal set. Some people may set it on a numerical scale or statistics but it doesn’t always have to be in that traditional sense. Using the example of my goal. I need to be able to track my progress. For this specific goal, this works by timing myself (setting milestones) every time I make this run. By this, I know how best to alter my training to reach the desired goal. If you find it had to measure your goal it may just not be as specific as you need it to be.

Attainable / Accountable

Firstly is the gaol that you have set attainable? Can you manifest it into reality? And who is keeping you accountable? We have to be reasonable in the goals we set, referring back to my goal, at my prime I could complete it in 11 minutes 30 secs. I cant just o straight back to this, I have to systematically build myself back to that standard. Its achievable, just not at the very instance.

Relevant

Your goal has to matter to you. It is the long and short of it. There is no point, for example, to wish to invest in a property when it’s not really relevant to your lifestyle but choose to set that goal because other people are. Why do you want the goals that you have set? What benefits will it bring you? It is hard to maintain motivated when you have no passion in what you’re doing. For me aside from the fact that I hate being unfit, I want to tone my body (bikini body and all), which will be the icing on the cake, but with the job that I have, fitness is key, hence the relevance.

Time Bound

Last but not least is timing. A goal without a time scale is nothing but a dream. You are wishing on horses for things if you don’t have a time in which you want to see these things manifest. Honestly, do you even want it? For the goal I have set, I aim to achieve this in the next four months. Which leads us into April, easter and the start of the financial year. In some ways, I also view this as the start of another year (not literally, hope you get my drift) So now I can start my next goal for upgrading my physical fitness.

So now that we know what SMART is…

I hope that this post helps you to zero in on your goal and have that 20/20 vision to accomplish your set targets for the year. Make sure you have an accountability partner who will check you if you start to flip. Also, don’t pick a friend who is likely to fall off the ladder same as you. If they are not someone who inspires and motivate you they probably shouldn’t be picked.

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