I am getting S.M.A.R.Ter this Year.
Coming up with a New Year Resolution is never very hard. We almost always a have a short list in the back of our mind of what we want to change about our lives or ourselves. Which, makes picking something to work on in the new year pretty easy.
The hard part is sticking with the resolution. People come in hot and are burnt out by 1/15. I have been guilty of it. I might even be guilty of it this year. Who knows? However, I do know that this year I am going to try and set better goals. Still the same goals as last year (or even the year before. Oops) but “SMART”er. I am determined!
I am honestly not sure how old I was. I was either a senior in high school or in my freshman elective writing course where we focused on setting goals. We learned about setting smart goals for ourselves and our future for both the long term and the short term. The SMART acronym first showed up in the November 1981 issue of Management Review. “There’s a S.M.A.R.T. way to write management goals and objectives.” was the title and it was written by George Doran, Arthur Miller, and James Cunningham. I was taught that in order for a goal to be smart they have to be the following:
S – Specific – Clear and concise.
M – Measurable – You are able to track or measure your progress.
A – Attainable – Challenging but realistic and attainable.
R – Relevant – Goals that are relevant to your life in the short term or long term.
T – Timely – There is a target due date.
SMART goals work because they create an action plan and hold you accountable to realistic standards. When you have a goal that you can meet that is much more motivating to follow through, compared to when you have a goal for yourself that you could likely never meet. Additionally, when you know exactly what you want to do and when you to need to achieve it by, it is easier to stick to the plan and by your goal.
You can take any goal or New Year Resolution into a Smart goal. For example, a common resolution is – “I want to lose weight.” Or “I want to get healthier.”
To make those goals smarter it should be something more like this. – “I want to lose 20 pounds by 6/30/2019.” Or “l want to be healthier by exercising 2 times a week, for at least a half hour for the first 3 months of the year”.
These goals are Smart because they are specific about what you want to achieve. They are both measurable and trackable by weight lost or actions taken They are attainable because in goal 1, it’s not losing 10 pounds in a week but 20 pounds in a practical and healthy amount of time. For goal 2, it is realistic because it it a manageable amount if time to commit to when start off with a new life style. Lastly they are timely, they both have an initial end date. Which is more manageable than setting a goal for the rest of your life. When you reach the deadline you either decide to keep going with the original goal or adjust accordingly to meet the needs of your lifestyle and what you want to achieve.
This year for my own New Year Resolution, in an effort to be kinder to the planet, I want to reduce my non-recyclable waste by 50%. Currently, I take my trash out about twice we week, by the end of the year I would like to be down to one bag a week.
Now go forth come up with SMART goals for the new year and let me know what they are below! I am rooting for you.