Any day is a great day to set goals and push forward with the life God has intended for you. Whether it’s related to health and fitness, career, or relationships, the desired outcome will not be completely achieved without a clear vision and a plan. When it comes to goal setting, SMART goals are what we recommend for everyone at every phase of life. SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-focused, and Time- bound.
Specific. The word itself implies we have a clear vision of exactly what we want to happen. Instead of saying you want to be healthier, you may say you want to improve your nutrition, lose weight, smile more, or experience less anxiety.
Measurable is a very important piece of this equation as well: how will you define your progress? If you want to improve your nutrition, you may measure this by aiming to drink 60 ounces of water each day and eating fruit and vegetables at every meal. You may identify that you want to lose exactly twelve pounds. Or, you want to smile at least once an hour each day.
Achievable. There is nothing wrong with dreaming big; but be careful not to set yourself up for disappointment. If you are currently unemployed, it would not benefit you to set a goal of making your first million dollars in the next six months. If your goal is fitness related, and you have never run in your life, you would not set a goal to run a marathon next month. Instead, you would set out to run one mile without stopping. Once you can do that, you can adjust your goal to continue to progress in this area.
Results-focused. Set a goal that is positively stated and progressive, as opposed to negative. Instead of stating “I will NOT eat unhealthy foods” try “I will make healthier choices at each meal.” This will keep you focused on your progress and highlight your accomplishments towards that desired outcome!
Time-bound: how will you know when your goal is achieved? It is very commendable to say “I will improve my health by drinking 60 ounces of water each day” but then what? To make your goal time-bound, you will put a time stamp on when you want to have these results, or how long you want to maintain this behavior. Try “I will improve my health by drinking 60 ounces of water each day” and include “five days each week” or “for thirty days in a row”. When you know your goal is achieved, you can first CELEBRATE! And then proceed to set out on your next goal in your process of creating the life you desire!
Contact our clinicians at AGAPE COUNSELING to help with these and other goal driven behaviors