What better time of year to set personal goals than January?
I spent most of my holidays leading up to New Year’s really re-evaluating my life and what I wanted to get from it. It makes sense to take a step back every once in awhile to re-assess our goals and also to measure progress against them.
If your goals are really broad like “retire early” or “be my own boss” it is time to get real and get specific. I’ll be writing more in the very near future about some of the key questions you should be asking yourself if you are still trying to figure out what you really want out of life. But, if you have a good idea of your priorities then it’s important to drill down and set personal goals.
There is so much truth to the adage “what gets measured gets done”. Any time I’ve set a goal or New Year’s resolution and not been specific I’ve failed. The same goes for annual objectives at work – we spend a lot of time planning each year to ensure that all objectives are SMART. I’m sure you are all familiar with this acronym but if not let me do a really quick recap.
S – SMART: An objective should be smart. (uh yeah, goes without saying…no one wants a dumb objective)
M – Measurable: You must consider how you will measure the objective. Again, what gets measured gets done. How will you know you’ve achieved your goal or objective?
A – Achievable/Attainable: It is great to set goals that are a bit of a stretch as you will see what you are really made of but it isn’t smart to set objectives that can not be achieved without hard work. For instance, setting a goal to make a million dollars next year is likely not achievable unless you are making very close to that amount now. You also don’t want to set objectives that are so out of reach that they become de-motivating.
R – Relevant: Do you have control over the outcome? Or the ability to influence?
T – Time: What is the timeframe in which you will meet the objective?
Want some additional examples? Check out some of these resources:
Share your goals below, if you dare. Publicly stating goals can also provide extra motivation to help make them a reality!