“Smart” is nothing more than clever label for goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time Sensitive. Consider your target to be a “smart goal” when it incorporates these five elements. Smart goal setting takes the wishing out of the equation and transforms your desire into a specific and tangible intention.
Before you can attain any goal in any area of your life, you must first get clear about what your specific goal really is and what it accomplishing it will mean to you. Getting down to what it is you want to accomplish helps crystallize your thinking as you gain clarity about your target. If you’re not clear about what your goals are, you cannot reach them. It’s as simple as that.
If for example, you desired a new car – what make, model, color and options would you want? As you fill in the details, a specific car begins to come into the picture. Define it in more depth and your goal becomes crystal clear.
How will you know when you’ve reached your goal? You need a way of keeping score. With a goal of a new car, it’s easy. You’ll have it in your driveway. But what if your goal is to make more money or lose weight? You need to make it measurable. Decide on an income target for this month… or this year and spell it out clearly. If your goal is to lose extra pounds – how many would you like to have lost and kept off one month from today? With the parameters clearly defined, it’s easy to know where you stand in relation to your target.
Smart goal setting is about having a dream with a deadline. It transforms a distant dream into a reachable goal. Decide what you want and imagine yourself already having, being, or doing it. Then take whatever actions steps seem logical to you today. Keep focusing on the desired outcome. As you do, much of the energy you expend will help move you closer to it.
If you doubt your ability to achieve your goal, how likely are you to reach it? Self doubt is a goal killer. You’ve got to overcome this knowing self-doubt by choosing a goal that seems achievable to you. You want to stretch, but you don’t want to break. You’ve got to know deep down that you can achieve your goal, without question.
But even with modest goals, doubts can easily creep in. So you’ve got to be on guard at all time and take corrective action as necessary. Find a quiet place and begin thinking about your goal. See it as yours now. Imagine that you’re already in possession of whatever you seek and indulge in the feelings you associate to having accomplished your dream. Feelings are the secret. Lock the in and indulge in the profound pleasure accomplishing this goal brings. The more real you can make this imaginary experience – the better because the subconscious reacts to our dominant thoughts and feelings.
It’s the end result that matters. Your smart goal may be tangible — like a new car, or intangible — like becoming a better team leader. But whatever you decide upon, you need to be able to identify it and envelop the feelings associated to having what you want. Commit your goal to paper and reflect on it often. Build a mental image of your goal achieved and posses it mentally in advance. Make it real in every sense in your imagination and whatever you seek, you can materialize.
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