S – Specific, Significant, and Stretching (January 6, 2016)
M – Measurable, Motivational, and Meaningful (January 13, 2016)
A – Ambitious, Attainable, and Action-Oriented (January 13, 2016)
R – Results-Based, Relevant, and Responsible
T – Time-Bound, Tangible, and Thoughtful
E – Ethical, Exciting, and Excellent (January 27, 2016)
R – Roles, Recorded, and Reviewed (January 27, 2016)
When goal setting, make sure that these six attributes are part of your plan:
- Results-Based: Goals are about achievement. What outcomes are expected? There should be a definable result at the end. In fact, most goals should have increment outcomes as well. For example, if one is trying to lose 20 pounds, there will be some results to track (the 1st pound lost, the 5th pound lost, the 10th pound lost) along the way to track one’s progress. Design your goals like a ladder and determine to reach the top by climbing one rung (and sometimes two) at a time.
- Relevant: Goals should align with your life mission (e.g. why you are here on Earth) and your values (e.g. who you really are). Goals should easily fit into your life and lifestyle. They may be challenging, but they are not to feel like you are trying to shove square pegs into round holes. Instead, goals should be parts of your life ‘puzzle’, where each goal is natural part of the whole. When each new ‘piece’ is added, the overall picture of your life becomes clearer. Also, it should be common that your goals connect to one another, like ‘puzzle pieces’ as there should be a number of themes that are constant throughout your life.
- Responsible: Be a good steward with money, time, and other resources which are utilized to achieve new outcomes. Never take unwarranted risks with the hope of achieving a goal. If other people are involved or impacted by a goal, be a good leader as well.
- Time-Bound: The major difference between a dream and a goal is a deadline. Goals need to become part of your daily life so they need definite start times and due dates. When considering the timeline of a goal, be realistic about the amount of time that it will take to achieve it. For long term goals, it is recommended that these are divided into smaller goals, projects, or tasks with determined completion dates in order to stay on schedule.
- Tangible: A good goal is precisely identified. This means that stating something like “I will strive to be a better person this year” is poorly defined goal as it is hard for anyone, including yourself, to appraise it. A goal should be tangible in a way that a third-party could easily identify and explain it to someone else. This attribute is closed related to being able to measure a goal.
- Thoughtful: Many people spend more time planning for a party or a vacation than planning for their life’s journey. Before setting goals, you should engage in some deep contemplation. Life goals are the bricks of a good life. Do not set trivial or small goals. Make sure you have the right targets and that you do not aim too low.
Next week, I’ll finish explaining the SMARTER model and discuss E (Energizing, Exciting, and Excellent) and R (Roles, Recorded, and Rewarding).