Goal setting can be tough. It’s so easy to give up halfway through our goals when we encounter a problem that some of us might not bother again at all.
However, if we want to achieve our dreams or do something different in the future, it all starts with setting goals. Hard work is needed, yes, but we need to know how to start.
This is where SMART goals can help you. SMART is a mnemonic acronym to help you focus and achieve your goals. This criteria increases the chances of achieving your goals because it makes sure they’re Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-Bound.
When setting goals, it needs to be specific. The goal needs to be well defined and you can first start specifying what you’re aiming to achieve first. Instead of vague goals like “I want to earn money”, change it up to “I want to earn X amount of money by Y date.”
You can even make it more specific by answering the 5 “W” questions when it’s applicable: Who, What, When, Where, Why.
To measure your progress, the goal needs to be measurable. You must set the criteria for achieving the goals you have set for yourself. The indicator of progress is important because you can keep coming back to this to check if you’re on track to achieve your goal or not.
For example, to make the goal of earning money measurable, you need to break it down — “Every month, I will earn X amount of money.”
While we do goal setting to achieve our dreams, the goal you start with at the beginning of your journey should still be achievable. It can be a challenge, yes, but it should be achievable within the bounds you have set for yourself.
Building on the goal of earning money, you need to make sure your savings fits within your current salary. If the savings amount is too high for your expenses, you can opt for side gigs.
Similar to Achievable, a Realistic goal should be within your reach. Knowing yourself and your life, the goal should be tailored fit to be achievable despite what your situation in life may be. If you believe you can accomplish your goal, then it already is realistic.
Lastly, your goal should be time-bound. This will push you to work on your goals now, instead of later. If your goals are vague, you can keep putting it off, but if it has a deadline, then you’ll have a sense of urgency to reach that deadline.
Goal setting may seem intimidating, but you can start breaking it down with the criteria above. Hopefully, this gives you a sense of direction to achieve your goals at the right time.