Happy New Year! It may seem like a simple calendar change, but the beginning of a new year is actually much more than that.
There’s a whole mindset shift that occurs during the big holiday season. Many schools and businesses go on break during this time to adjust to the transition from closing one year out and beginning anew.
There are glittery decorations, more parties, countdowns, and a big bang, fireworks welcome to the new year.
Why all the pizazz?
It’s a big shift to honor what was and to visualize new possibilities for our future. And, it’s exciting to have a clean slate, a new calendar, and most importantly new goals!
But new goals are exciting only if we take action and accomplish something. Do you ever get excited about a new goal and then get stuck? Or worse, allow your goals to dwindle until low and behold you’ve reached another year-end with the same goals not accomplished?
If so, it’s time to take a look at how you are setting your goals.
I teach a method called SMART goals. The acronym was first used by George Doran in the November 1981 issue of Management Review.
I’m going to briefly break it down for you.
S – specific
M – measurable
A – attainable
R – relevant
T – timely
It makes perfect sense once you read through it. As I mentioned in my last blog piece, when we focus on the most important thing, we must be specific! Too often our goals lack clarity and specificity. When we don’t have clarity, we lose sight of where we’re going and we get lost. Maybe your goal is to have healthier relationships. Good start, but it can be more refined. State the person you want to have a healthier relationship with and also state specific things that would make it healthier for you, i.e., constructive communication, active listening, respect, empathy, etc. Be as specific as possible.
We also have to be able to measure what we are trying to accomplish. We can’t just say I’m going to lose weight, unless of course you want to fail at your goal. Failure is good, it’s expected, but intentional failure is not a good thing. We have to ask how much are we trying to lose? Do we want to fit in a new size? Do we want more muscle definition? We have to measure it to know if we’ve accomplished the goal.
I love dreaming big! I think you should dream big, too. And, I also think our dreams must be realistic and attainable. If you are going to run a marathon or gain a new skill, you have to give yourself appropriate time to train or gain the new skill. It’s very likely not going to happen in a week.
Your goals have to be meaningful to you. If your goal is to please someone else, it’s not going to work. Relevancy = rewards.
Finally, put a timeframe on your goals. We get a little lost without timeframes. Want to learn a new dancing skill? Give yourself a couple of months to acquire some basic skills and evaluate your progress from there. I love long-term goals, but it’s the daily actionable steps that will get us there. Schedule daily blocks of time to work towards your goals. You’ll be surprised what you can accomplish when you take baby steps to get there.
I hope you enjoy working with this SMART goal structure as much as I love using it and teaching it. My experience with goal-setting and goal-getting is that we will get stumped along the way and SMART goals can (and likely will) turn into dips and dead ends unless we have some strong mindset tools in place.
I’ll talk more about why that happens next time, but for now, I want to let you know that if you are ready to tackle your biggest goal of the year and, you are ready to be the best and brightest you, I have a free challenge that will help you get there.
I’m sharing my personal 9-step process to help you achieve the best you in all you do. The steps I share in my free challenge are the exact steps I used to write and publish my first book and, create and publish my first educational resource product.
My Nine To Shine Challenge: A Daily Roadmap to Help You De-Stress for Success, starts on January 7th. It’s completely FREE and takes place on-line for 9 days + you get a free digital resource (with practical and actionable steps) to help you start the year off SMART and strong! Register for the challenge today by clicking here.
I can’t wait to teach you the habits that will help you grow a strong and healthy mindset so you can accomplish what you set out to do and become the person everyone loves (including yourself)!
If you aren’t joining my free challenge this time around, I think you are crazy… just kidding! But seriously, try the SMART goal framework to help you turn your new year into a new you that gets stuff done with purpose and clarity.