Happy 2021! Your vision board is done. You have selected your word of the year.
You feel full of energy and enthusiasm and are ready to tackle every project and every goal.
What about 2 months from now? How will you keep on track? How about six months from now–will 50% of your goals be accomplished by then? Let’s make certain they can be.
The key to setting goals and accomplishing them is to set SMART goals. And, just as important for your goals to be SMART, is to START smart.
The traditional Smart goals as introduced by Peter Drucker are:
- Specific (simple, sensible, significant).
- Measurable (meaningful, motivating).
- Achievable (agreed, attainable).
- Relevant (reasonable, realistic, and resourced, results-based).
- Time-bound (time-based, time-limited, time/cost limited, timely, time-sensitive).
Deepak Chopra has his version which I love.
- Stretch for more than you can reach
- Make everything measurable
- Agreement with yourself and those around you
- Record your progress
- Time limits for acting and getting results
However we define SMART goals, they won’t magically come to fruition without foresight, preparation, and follow-through. To set SMART goals we have to START Smart. And, to start smart we must be or have:
S: Set strength-based goals. Rely on our strengths
T: Tenacious. Show tenacity.
A: Alignment. Be aligned with our core values
R: Reflect. Take time to reflect and give yourself the time and space to discover WHY you want to pursue the specific goals you’ve set.
T: Team. Gather a team around you to help you accomplish your goals.
Let’s delve into it further:
S: Strength-based means to rely on your own strengths, talents, skills, and behaviors that naturally come to you and help you accomplish what you set your mind to do. For example, I am a naturally positive person and that positivity propels me to have a can-do attitude, view every obstacle as a growth challenge, and know I can think beyond the box to find a solution.
Every goal requires a tenacious, unwavering belief in its accomplishment. It requires hard work, planning, and commitment. Otherwise, it’s not a goal, it a wish.
A: Alignment with your core values
Goals have to be true to our core. They have to align with what is most important to us and to the values we adhere to. Otherwise, we will have inner conflict and a harder path towards achievement.
R: Reflective. We have to give ourselves the time and space to discover WHY we want to pursue a specific goal. The goal has to be significant to us and to those around us. When other stakeholders are involved, there is more on the line and a bigger motivation for accomplishment.
Goals are not accomplished in a vacuum. We all need a support system or an accountability partner to keep us on track and focused. Sharing our goals with others creates a commitment, a stronger sense of responsibility to self and to others.
As you plan out your 2021, how will you break your goals into SMART ones and take the time to START smart?