Today we’re going to talk about goal setting and one of the most important aspects of goal setting. I want to help you achieve, literally any goal you want. This is one of the components, that anything from weight loss, to getting organized to starting a new career, you must have this component to make sure you stay on track with achieving your goal.
If you want to know more about How to Stay on Track with a Goal, watch this video:
We are going to talk about, Evaluation! You must be able to evaluate how you’re doing along the process of trying to achieve that goal. So, what does that mean? I don’t know if you’ve heard the term SMART goal before but basically there are a few elements of what makes a goal a ‘good’ goal. SMART being an acronym, of course.
S – The very first letter is “S” This stands for Specific. You must be specific! When it comes to your weight for instance, you need to clarify “I want to lose weight.”
M – Letter “M” stands for Measurable. So no matter what the goal is, you have to find a way to measure it. Usually this has a number attached to it. So in that first example, saying, I want to lose 10 pounds, that’s specific and measurable.
A – The “A” stands for Action oriented or Actionable. Basically, your goal will fall flat unless you plan for the specific steps that you’re going to take in order to achieve that goal. So going back to our original example. Lose weight (S), lose 10 pounds (M), and now we add the action steps:
working out 3 days a week (A) and decreasing my caloric intake 250 calories a day (A). Those are 2 action steps you can attach in order to achieve that goal.
R – The “R” in the word SMART stands for Realistic or Reasonable. Is this something you could actually do? So looking back at the actions you attached to that goal, you need to measure it against where you currently are in life. Is it something that’s actually going to happen?
For instance, let’s say I’m a new mom and getting out of the house is an extreme challenge and the gym down the street from me doesn’t accept children until they are 6 months old but my baby is 4 months old. So if I were to set a goal of going to the gym 3 times a week, then that would not be reasonable for where I’m at in my life. So maybe setting a goal of walking 3 times a week, even a stroller walk is more realistic for my situation. You want to make sure that the actionable items and the actual goal itself is something that is attainable and something that is within your realm of what you can achieve. You may want to stretch it a bit too because you want to make it something you’re really gonna go for and not something that’s too easy to achieve.
T – The “T” in SMART stands for Time Bound. So the final step in making sure your goal can be evaluated is to put a time limit on it. Here’s our example, I want to lose 10 pounds by exercising 3 times a week, decrease my calories by 250 calories a day and I want to do this within the next 30 days or 60 days. Whatever you believe is reasonable for you. But you need to put a time frame on it.
This is how we evaluate how our goals are going. This is how we evaluate if we’re on track or not. We need to ask ourselves, “are we going about our goals in a SMART manner?” So, if your time frame is 60 days and you’ve only lost 5 pounds then you have to go back and course correct, adjust. You don’t beat yourself up, you want to celebrate your successes but you always course correct.
Think about an airplane. An airplane is off course, I believe the statistic is something around 99% of the time because what an airplane’s computer does constantly is course correct! It’s constant!! But you can’t do that if you’re not evaluating where you are throughout the journey.