How Smart Goals can help you reach your dreams
If nothing in your life changed over the next 5 years, would you be OK with that?

If you want different results next year, and the year after that, what are you willing to change today to start making an impact or your future trajectory?

Do you believe that your expectations of the future help create it?

One of the exercises I use with my clients is the wheel of life exercise, which helps clients evaluate their lives in 8- 12 different areas. 

Without fail, when evaluating life from a holistic perspective, clients are able to identify some areas of life they feel have been neglected.

Rather than beating ourselves up over the fact that we may have neglected our friendships, while raising our families, and working full time, for example, we set small achievable goals to help them improve each area they feel needs attention. 

Zig Zigler once said, with defined goals we release our own power and things start happening. 

I believe my experience resonates with this. Once I have set my mind to doing something, opportunities appear in my path that make my goal more achievable. 

You have likely heard about SMART goals before. Goals that are Specific, measurable, Action-oriented, Realistic and Time Bound. 

Specific - Be very specific about what you want and why you want it. 

Measurable - Measurable goals help hold us accountable. When I was a health care administrator and data analyst, we used to say, "You can't fix what you can't measure." WIth that in mind, how many pounds do you want to lose? How many fewer cigarettes will you smoke today? How long will it take you to complete that coursework? When we decide how we will measure our progress towards achievement, it also helps us stay accountable to our own goals. 

Action Oriented - Our goals must be focused in our circle of control. We cannot make goals for other people. Our goals should have action oritented steps that we can take ourselves in the pursuit of our goals. You must be in control of your own destiny and your actions will assure that control. 

Realistic - Our goals should be realistic, so that they are achievable. If a goal is not within reach, we can break it down into smaller increments to make it more achievable. For example, losing 50 lbs. in 1 month is not a realistic or healthy goal for anyone. Experts say a healthy goal is 1 lb. per week of weight loss. With that in mind, we can revise our weight loss goal by breaking it down into more realistic targets.  A more realistic goal is 50 lbs. in a year, and that breaks down to a four-pound goal per month, which is much more realistic, healthy and achievable. 

Time Bound- At the heart of a goal, its just an incremental step towards our dreams, that heave a deadline. By giving ourselves a deadline that is realistic and action oriented, we increase the likelihood of success, because we are likely taking routing steps towards the achievement of our goal.

Here is the thing, focus on the outcome, what it is that you REALLY Want? Dig deep. 
You don't necessarily want to spend time exercising every day so you can lose that 50 lbs., but what you really want is to feel healthier and more confident in your own body, losing 50 pounds is the means by which you wish to achieve that health and confidence and exercise or dietary habits are how you will achieve that 50-pound weight loss. It is so helpful to to understand what it is we area really trying to achieve. This is the motivation for our journey and it will getting really clear about why we want what we want will help us be more successful. 

It is also helpful to ensure our goals align with our values.  If you believe in your heart, that your body is healthy and you don't need to lose weight, or you are trying to lose weight for someone else, you may not be in alignment with your values, and this incongruence will likely sabotage your success. 

Finally, be sure your goals are stated in the positive. 
I want to lose weight because I feel like a hippo is not a positive outlook to have.
Try something more like this: I want to lose weight because I want to stay healthy into my elder years and be present and healthy for the next generation.

Be sure you have brainstormed all of the potential challenges you may encounter en-route to your goals, this will help you plan for ways to use your strengths to mitigate those challenges if and when they occur. 

Make a list of your resources that can help you achieve your goals and each and every day, do one thing, take one step in the right direction. 
Before you know it, you will be knocking accomplishments off your list and making even bigger and better future goals!

If you need help setting smart goals or breaking them down into daily habits to achieve your success, hit reply to this post and reach out, 

Reply below and tell me about your big goal for this year. 


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