Are you a SMART goal-setter?

Goal-setting is an adaptive behavior that can help us achieve things we desire, give us purpose in our lives, help us feel empowered, and help us to be productive. Almost everyone sets goals in their personal and professional lives, but not everyone is good at achieving their goals. This is partially because not everyone is good at creating effective goals. A lot of us have vague ideas of what we might want to happen in the future, or a grandiose vision with no plan of making it a reality. Lucky for those of us who aren’t so good at setting goals, there are simple practices we can do to become better at setting goals.

SMART is a common mnemonic device used when talking about setting effective goals:

S- specific: what exactly is your goal? Could you explain it in a sentence?

M-measurable: how will you be able to tell if you are on track to achieving your goal?

A- attainable: is your goal possible?

R- relevant: does your goal make sense in the context of your life and what you want?

T- time: what is the time frame for completing the goal?

If you find yourself feeling a lack of productivity in your life, be it personal or professional, try setting SMART goals for yourself. Try setting goals that are small and manageable at first to get in the practice. For example:

S- I want to fold the pile of laundry on my bed, and put it in my dresser.

M- I will be able to see my clothes folded, and then I will put them away.

A- yes

R- I need to do this so I am not sleeping on my clean clothes tonight.

T- I have 15 minutes before I have to go to work, so I will fold as much as I can for 15 minutes.

Remember, you did not engrave your goals into a stone tablet, so be flexible with yourself. Our goals can change as our lives change, but SMART goal-setting is a great tool for giving life some direction.