Grant Anderson, M.A. LMHC, Clinical Supervisor & Licensed Therapist
Hi. Welcome, my name is Grant Anderson. I’m with Crosswinds Counseling. Today I want to tell you a little bit about setting goals for the new year. So, one of the acronyms we like to use is S.M.A.R.T. goals. That stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Timely goals.
As we look at the goals we’re setting for the New Year and New Years Resolutions, you want to make sure first of all that they’re Specific. You have a specific purpose or goal – not a general mindset. So you know, ‘I want to improve my health,’ is a little bit too general. Saying, ‘I want to run a mile in a certain time’ is much more specific.
You want to have it measurable so that you know when you’ve achieved your goal. If it’s too general and not specific enough, you’re not going to be able to measure that goal and get to where you want to go.
Achievable. You want a goal that is realistic for you – that you have an achievable mindset. An example would be saying, ‘By the end of the month I want to run a marathon,’ which may not be achievable if you’ve never run before. So you want to set your goals for your level and what you’re trying to end up with.
Relevant. You want goals to be relevant to you. If it’s not relevant, then it’s not going to be internally motivating, and most likely you’re not going to follow through. A lot of people don’t stick with their New Year’s Resolutions. That’s what research tells us. So making sure that you have a relevant goal – it’s much more likely that [you’re] going to have a goal that succeeds and that’s going to work for you.
And finally timely goals. You want to make sure that that you have a timetable for your goals so that you know when to look at [it]. When you’re going to achieve it. That timetable might be different for each goal. It may be one month, two months, it may even be by the end of the year, or halfway through the year, but give yourself a way to look at when you want to accomplish the goal.
The hope is that by using the acronym S.M.A.R.T. you’re more likely to achieve your News Years Resolutions and more likely to achieve your goals. I hope this helps. I hope you have a great New Year.