Each one of us pictures a different vision of success. We all have unique goals according to what we dream of and plan to achieve. For some, it may be making a decent living or landing a good career; for others it is settling down and building a nice, loving family. Some of our dreams are big so the goals are the same, while some of us may simply create goals that are easy to achieve. No matter the type of goal, establishing SMART goals will lead the way towards reaching our goals in life.
SMART goals perfectly describe and explain the process and key factors of goal setting. The term SMART actually stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable or Attainable, Realistic, and Time Framed. Let us understand each of these and how the whole concept impacts effective goal setting.
S for Specific Goals
One underlying factor for failed goal setting is the making of vague, broad, and unclear goals. Goals like these are pretty difficult to measure and determine if we have made it or not. Rather, each goal must be specific. In establishing specific goals, the five “Wh” questions and the “How” question can serve as our guide.
- Who: The people involved in a certain goal must be noted here.
- What: Here is where we write down our dreams, plans, and anything we want to achieve.
- When: Each goal must have a timescale of when it will be accomplished.
- Where: The location or place where the goal is mostly acted upon is written here.
- Why: State the reason or purpose of each goal.
- How: The manner of completing the goal must be described here.
M for Measurable Goals
As we act on each goal, it is important to keep track of our progress in order for us to know if there is indeed progress or if we have barely done anything to reach completion. Setting criteria is a good way to measure the progress of each goal.
A for Achievable or Attainable
Our goals are not goals at all if they are not achievable or have no possibility of becoming materialized. Since our goals are considered to have a degree of importance and impact in our life, we find ways to make them come true. For a goal to be attainable, we have to suit our skills, attitude, and abilities according to the demands of each goal. With more achieved goals, we find it easier accomplishing those that seem to be out of reach.
R for Realistic
An important factor for a goal to be considered realistic is when it is also achievable. Aside from that, the reason for creating your goal must be according to your willingness to do it. No one but you can dictate what goal you should accomplish in order to become successful. If you wish to set higher and bigger goals, go ahead and do so. However, always remember to check that your goals manifest significant progress rather than just simply leaving it as a dream.
Goals also become realistic if you believe that you can do it, and then they become attainable. If you set a goal now that you have probably somehow completed in the past, there is a big tendency of it coming true. Be sure to set your limitations and restrictions so that you will not be too idealistic about your goal.
T for Time Framed
Each goal must be created with a sense of urgency to it. It is not like you should hurry or be in a rush to attain it, but the point is that there must be an established timescale for each goal so that you have a sufficient reason not to delay or set it aside. When there is a specific deadline to complete the goal, you are bound to work on it to start noticing substantial progress.
On the other hand, if a goal is not set to a particular timeframe, there is a possibility of procrastinating and relying on the notion that there is plenty of time to work on the goal. Sometimes, you tend to forget that you have a goal, so the dream either becomes too hard to achieve or it goes down the drain.