HOW TO SET SMART GOALS

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SMART GOALS

 

 

 

We can all struggle sometimes to achieve our goals whether its business or individual goals.   Often our struggle is not because of a lack of effort, but rather how our goals have been structured.

 

Anytime you set a goal and you find yourself struggling keep in mind the word SMART.  SMART is an acronym that can be used to help evaluate and add structure to your goals.   SMART stands for :-

 

Specific

Measurable

Actionable

Relevant

Time Bound

 

SMART begins with asking yourself “how specific is a goal?”


Specific:  This is probably the most important part of establishing or evaluating a goal.   The less specific a goal is the more difficult it is to determine how long the goal should take to complete or how to measure success.

 

Consider the difference between a goal to get healthy versus the goal to lose weight versus the goal to lose 10 kg.  The goal to get healthy is much less specific than a goal to lose 10 kg!

 

Measurable -The next question to ask is “How will I know if I am achieving my goal?” “How is the goal measured?”  What determines success? Some goals may be best measured by a simple yes-or-no, like running a marathon, while other goals are better measured by using metrics such as the goal to specifically lose 10 kg.

 

The key to measurement is making sure that in whatever way the goal is measured, it accurately reflects success.  For instance, if you do not have access to a scale then measuring weight loss will be difficult and less accurate, but an alternative measure may be to track how many inches you have lost around the waist. But, to what extent does this accurately reflect the goal?

 

Without access to a reliable way of measuring weight, we may want to consider buying a scale or restructuring our goal.

 

Actionable is not asking yes or no, but how will the goal be achieved?  What is our action plan? Do we have the resources and capabilities required to achieve success? If not what do we need?    Well-designed goals provide clarity of action. If the actions required to achieve a goal are unclear or there are a large number of actions that need to be taken, we should consider breaking down the main goal into manageable, actionable sub-goals. In isolation any single goal is relevant, but in life we most often are in the process of pursuing multiple goals and having too many goals at the same time.

 

RELEVANT:

 

We need a tool to help us track our goals to make sure we are pursuing our most relevant goals at any given moment in time.   One technique is to place goals in a matrix that looks at effort required versus perceived value of achieving the goal. Not always, but most of the time we will want to focus our energy on low effort high value goals.

 

Another technique is to use the Pareto Principle, also known as the 80/20 rule. Ask, which are the 20% of goals that will provide me with 80% of my return? 

 

Time:  We need to include a specific date by which a goal should be accomplished, it helps provide incentive and allows us to monitor progress.  Consider the difference between the goal to lose 10 kg and the goal to lose 10 kg in 10 weeks. Simply by including an element of time we can now calculate how much we should be losing each week, and if after 5 weeks we have only lost 1 kg, we can revisit our action plan and ramp it up.

 

Goal setting is an on-going process of action, evaluation, and revision.  It is not about lowering goals or standards to ensure success it is about recognizing goals are dynamic, because life is dynamic. We do not live in a static world. Life happens. A goal that is relevant today may be irrelevant tomorrow.

 

When using SMART, stay flexible and motivated by setting aside time to re-evaluate your goals on a regular basis.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Goal Planning and Their Execution

 

 

There are companies who do not want to set their short or long term goals because their mindset may not be aligned with their future and vision and they are afraid of dealing with failure . There is an old saying that “if you fail to plan you plan to fail”.  Entrepreneurship spirit helps, but practicality, truthfulness, accepting the circumstances and the inevitable are essential factors when setting your goals. Overall, achievable results are more easily reached when  goal setting is done properly, realistically and carefully and regularly. 

That is why it is imperative that individuals, entrepreneurs and companies periodically set employee goal setting activities to help them better understand the dynamics of the team and themselves.  Goal setting helps motivate them to cooperate in the collective idea and goal of achieving progress and development for the company and themselves. Before starting to set ambitious and major goals, it is  best that bosses and managers orientate the staff about goal setting and what the desired outcome is. 

Here are some useful tips for you and your staff to effectively set  goals: Explain why goals, be it for the short term or the long term, are very crucial and important as sometimes, we do not understand why we have to go through the soul searching task of setting goals when there is no guarantee that those goals would ever be achieved. Without set goals the company or individual is like a ship on the high seas without a rudder, floating aimlessly through life.  All companies and individuals need to plan to ensure future success and growth for both. 

But what does company goal setting provide for an individual or group? Perhaps the individual, alone or as a part of a group, has already done some personal or career planning. Why add another goal setting process to an already knowledgeable person or group? The principle behind goal setting when conducted by an individual, institution or a group is that, it focuses on the future direction and path of that individual or company, not only for the common good of the group but also for the individual members.  Remember as individuals grow and evolve so do their goals.

When arranging your  goals setting schedule, make sure that the sufficient time has been set aside so that your goal setting timeline does not conflict with any other important appointments or activities. Make sure you have a time table of set dates available so deadlines, appointments or important dates are not forgotten or missed out and are taken into account in your new plan.  Define your intended goals very clearly.  Start off with a bullet list, next flesh out in detail what the goal is and don’t forget to set a date by when the goal should be achieved, but be realistic as a missed deadline can be very demotivating.  This alone can destroy the spirit of entrepreneurship. 

Ideas and dreams will remain just that unless you define them and make them really clear to yourself through setting attainable and achievable goals.  Once you have set your goals 1.  your whole being, all of your senses, should be one in achieving your goal.  2. Be positive about your  Goals, right from the start,   3. Revisit your goals regularly to refresh and remind yourself where your path is leading you and if you are on target for the desired end date,  4. Stay true to your desired path and if you find yourself going off track do whatever it takes to get back on the road to your goal, 5. Complete your goals and give yourself a pat on the back for doing so, 6. Set your next set of goals and repeat.   

 

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Exercise and the New You

 Irrespective of what your motives are for starting a brand new workout routine you really want to take note of your nutritional needs. If you exercise like mad but consume a excessively fatty food plan you will not gain the overall benefits out of your exercises. 

Do you really know what you put into your mouth everyday, every week, every month?  Its difficult to know if you don’t record it, so make a start on writing down everything you eat and drink during the month – write it down!  You may be surprised at simply how munch you do consume and drink.  However don’t cheat, its sincerely not worth it!  This will give you a excellent evaluate of what you eat and when. By way of keeping a meals diary for at the least a month you may find you bypass breakfast, you will see a pattern forming of how often you eat meals out and what you are eating.   Analyze your food diary and you may see you are consuming a food regimen this is excessive in fats, sugar and take-away food which may be full of sodium. 

Once you have got this recorded you should start to make adjustments. So as an example in case your problem is you drink too many fizzy drinks, you want to begin swapping them for water or similar wholesome liquids like tea. Don’t deprive yourself of everything you like and love straight away, just start by making small changes. 

Its so easy to grab a milky coffee and pastry every day when life is a constant rush, so try to  switch the pastry for a less fatty choice. Or, preferably take your own low fat granola bar or some other snack. If you are eating out due to time then try whipping up a fruit smoothie or nibble on  a chunk of fruit in conjunction with some yogurt. 

You’ll quickly start to feel better when you begin eating healthful meals, you will also quickly have a feeling of ‘Life is right’ while you see the benefits of your exercise which the better meals you are eating give you  extra strength and stamina.

 In case you are one of the many folks who go immediately from work to the fitness center or to run in the park then snack on a health bar or supplementary vitamins bar in advance so you wont go through burnout. To assist nutrition while you are changing your eating habits add vitamin supplements, they will also help you get through your exercise routines.  

You don’t want to make drastic changes in either your diet or your exercise routine.  Start small with small changes in each.  Your weight loss program and exercise which you are now doing are going to make an impact and eating fresh fruit and vegetables will provide you with greater energy levels  and the physical activities will make you sleep sounder.

Try to go for a walk every day – take your  4 legged pal for a run in the park, or around the block, but make sure you do not skip breakfast to do this.  Once this turns into a morning habit both  you and your dog will look forward to it everyday and it soon turns into a great bonding time and its masses of fun.  Its a great way to help you embark for your new diet plan.

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Exercise and Nutrition

No matter what your motives are for beginning a new workout program you really need to take note of your dietary wishes. If you exercising like crazy but  however eat a high fat food regimen you will no longer obtain the overall advantages out of your workouts. 

Make a habit of recording everything you put into your mouth in the month – write it down!  You will be amazed at just how munch you do eat and drink.  But don’t cheat, its really not worth it! This will come up with a terrific review of what you eat and when. By means of keeping a meals diary for at least a month you may see you bypass breakfast, you can see how regularly you consume food out and what your meals alternatives are. From here you will see if you are consuming a diet that is high in fat, sugar and take-away meals that are full of sodium. 

As soon as you’ve got this recorded you could start to make adjustments. So as an example in case your hassle is you drink too many fizzy liquids, you want to start swapping them for water or similar healthy drinks like tea. You don’t have to go cold turkey but begin making small modifications. 

In case you grab a coffee and a doughnut each day then try to begin by switching the doughnut for a lower fat choice. Or preferably take your personal low fat granola bar or a few different breakfast snack. If you are eating out due to time then try whipping up a fruit smoothie or consume a chunk of fruit in conjunction with some yogurt. 

You will soon start to feel better once you start eating healthy food, you will also soon have a feeling of ‘life is good’ when you see the benefits of your exercise.  The good food quality will also give you more energy to workout at higher levels of intenseness  and for longer periods.

To help improve your nutrients and exercise routines supplements may be a useful.  If you are one of the many people who go straight from work to the gym or to run in the park then snack on a health bar or supplementary vitamins bar in advance so you wont suffer burnout. 

You don’t need to make drastic adjustments with reference to both nutrients and exercising.  Start small with small modifications in both your diet and exercise that are going to make an impact. Eating fresh fruit and veggies will give you more energy and the exercises will make you sleep better.

Please do not skip breakfast and try to go for a walk every day – Take you best four legged friend for a run in the park, or around the block.  once this becomes a habit both you and your dog will look forward to it everyday and it then becomes a great bonding time and lots of fun.  ITs a great way to embark on your new weight loss plan.  

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