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Why turning your goals into SMART goals is the key to successfully achieving them

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SMART goals provide a framework to identify your key goals, while also setting you on the path to successfully achieving them. SMART is an acronym, which stands for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-based. Read on to find out more about each of these components and how they can help you to achieve your goals.

  1. Specific – this refers to the details of the goal you are hoping to achieve. Setting a specific goal allows you to have a clear idea of where you are heading and my provide insight into the steps required for success. When writing the specifics of your goal, it can be helpful to consider the ‘what, why, when, where and who’ of your goal. For example, you may wish to drink more water by drinking less coffee to improve focus and sleep.
  2. Measurable – once you know what you are working towards, it’s important to have a way of measuring your progress towards this goal. Not only does this allow you to identify how you’re tracking, but it also provides a clear understanding of when the goal is achieved. For example, you may set yourself the goal of drinking 1.5L of water and drinking 2 cups of coffee per day to improve focus and sleep.
  3. Achievable – this is an important step, which is often missed. Taking the time to reflect on how this new goal is going to fit into your lifestyle can improve the likelihood of achieving it. If the goal doesn’t feel achievable in your current life-stage, it may be beneficial to tweak the specifics to make it more achievable, or alternatively you may opt to choose a new goal and save your original goal for another time. For example if you are currently drinking only 500mL water and 4 coffees per day then the above goal may feel like a big change. You may start with drinking 750mL water and reducing to 3 coffees a day to improve focus and sleep. You may gradually tweak these amounts as you achieve the goals.
  4. Relevant – this provides an opportunity to take a step back and look at the bigger picture related to this goal. Is it important to you? Does it act as a steppingstone to a larger goal that you are hoping to achieve? Or does it simply give you the confidence in yourself to be able to work towards more challenging goals? Whatever your motivation, understanding the relevance of the goal to you will help to increase motivation and discipline to change.
  5. Time-based – the final step in goal setting is ensuring your goal has a time-based component to it. This not only provides a timeline to achieving your goal, but also helps to prioritise it compared to other goals and deadlines in life. When setting the time-based component to your goal, it is important to be realistic about what is achievable. If you have longer-term goals, it can be helpful to set time-specific milestones along the way such as an idea of where you want to be half-way through, or stepping stones to increase when each component of the goal is achieved. For example, you might aim to start drinking 750mL water per day and reducing from 4 to 3 coffees a day on your office days over the next 2 weeks prior to checking in with your progress and modifying the goal as needed.

If you are wanting to explore this concept further, or get assistance with your own SMART goals, then book an appointment with one of our health coaches and get yourself one-step closer to achieving your goals. Call 1300 030 707.

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