SMART Goals – You really have to be smart in setting your goals

 

“Know what you want to do, hold the thought firmly, and do every day what should be done, and every sunset will see you that much nearer to your goal.”
Elbert Hubbard

GOAL – A goal is a description of a condition one wishes to achieve. It is the desired result or possible outcome that a person or a system envisions and commits to achieve.

If there is no goal, there is no direction. “Being happy” is not a goal because it does not describe the specific condition.  Instead, “I would travel to Europe this year” is a goal.

The GOAL should be SMART. This acronym extends to Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. This is indeed very powerful tool while hardly used.

S – Specific
If you don’t express your goal in specific terms, it is very difficult to achieve. Moreover, you will never know whether you have achieved your goal or not.

Examples
Ambiguous/Vague  – I want to lose weight.
Specific – I want to lose 5 kg in next 90 days.

M – Measurable/Meaningful
You must have concrete criteria to achieve your goals.  You should be able to measure your result or outcome to ensure you are on track. The goal will be really meaningful when you attach motivation to it.

A – Achievable/Attainable
Goals should be motivating and challenging while do ensure that it’s not virtually impossible.  The moment you define your goals and start working on them, it starts coming closer. Things get easier.  Attainable doesn’t mean choosing very simple goals.  The tough goals stimulate you to do more and expand your comfort zone.

R – Realistic/Relevant
The goals which are not realistic, you are highly unlikely to achieve them. Although nothing is impossible but the exceptions are rare.  For instance, if you decide to go for ACP certification with little agile knowledge, assuming you will read 5 books in 5 days, the chances are fat that you will have a success.

T – Timely/Timebound
It is critical to specify a timeline for achieving your goals. If the goal is for the long term, break them down into smaller multiple goals to hit your ultimate goal. This would keep you motivated throughout the journey. For instance, you want to rank number one blogging site for Agile in 24 months, you can target to get into first 1000 in 6 months, 100 in a year, 10 in 1.5 years and eventually number one in 2 years.

Guidelines

  1. Give a deep thought, identify your goals, discuss if needed.
  2. Write them down clearly.
  3. Review them regularly.
  4. Track your progress.
  5. Update your goals as required.
  6. Take the complete ownership of your goals.
  7. Short term goals need to be more realistic. The long term should be broken down into multiple short term goals.

The “Law of Attraction” principle works very well with your goals. If you constantly keep looking at your goals every day, then the chances of achieving them become very high. According to “Law of attraction”, if you can convince yourself of something, the whole world support you to achieve that.  The self-motivation/self-realization/self-acceptance of accomplishing a goal is more important than putting an effort has been proven many times.

The people will treat you the way you treat yourself.  If you think, you would get promoted and you convince yourself that it would happen, it is very likely that it will happen. In order to convince yourself, you should set SMART goals. This will be one of the inputs for “Law of Attraction” to work. You must have noticed that if you want something desperately and constantly focusing on that, you will just get it. In the process of desperation, you actually work on convincing yourself.

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