What are S.M.A.R.T. Goals + A Free Template

I had heard about creating goals using the S.M.A.R.T. planning method a couple years ago and planned to use them in my life but it wasn’t until I took the Power of You course last year with Mel Robbins and her team that I actually used it effectively to complete a goal: creating a newsletter. Granted, it has fallen to the wayside as I have been trying to figure out the direction of this blog but I was able to see that creating S.M.A.R.T. goals actually works.

If you’ve never heard of S.M.A.R.T. goals before, here’s a brief description of what it means and what it does.

S.M.A.R.T. is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. When you set goals for yourself you need to know exactly what the end goal is and using the S.M.A.R.T. planning method will help you see and set that goal. Often times we set vague, generic goals or our goals are huge and audacious within the timeframe we set for ourselves; we don’t really think through all we’ll need to do to accomplish them. That’s where S.M.A.R.T. planning comes in.

Let’s take a common goal of losing weight. What does that mean? It’s not specific enough. Do you want to lose 5lbs, 10lbs, 25lbs? Is it total weight loss you are after, meaning body weight, or is it fat loss because you want to keep or build muscle? What is it that you really want to accomplish? What are the things that you will be doing (i.e. choosing healthier and nutritious foods, meal prepping and planning each week, finding a workout/accountability partner, working out 5x’s a week)?

After you get specific, how will you measure your progress? How are you going to measure that you are meeting that weight loss goal? Are you going to weigh yourself once a week? Use a tape measure to see inches lost? Where are you going to mark down your progress?

Is this achievable? This one may seem obvious to you, of course you can lose the weight, but are you willing to push past your comfort zone a bit to accomplish this? Is it actually a realistic goal by the date you have set (see Time-bound)?

Is losing the weight relevant to you? Is it actually something YOU want? In other words, you’re doing it for you and not because someone else says you should be doing it? Think of this as the “why” you are wanting to accomplish this goal.

Finally, we come to time-bound: when is the end date? When do you want this goal to be accomplished?

If you are working on your goals and find that it isn’t specific enough or maybe the time-frame is too short, it’s fine to go back and whittle down the specific goal you want to accomplish until you’re clear on your goals. Once you get done with setting the SMART goal, you can rewrite it (see my examples below).

That’s a S.M.A.R.T. goal in a nutshell. If you would like the template I used to create my SMART goals you can find it HERE. Just go to File –> Make a copy so that you can edit the document.

Happy SMART goal planning!

Here are my S.M.A.R.T. Goals
Here are my S.M.A.R.T. Goals Rewritten
The Featured Song this week to help you write those S.M.A.R.T. goals: Daft Punk’s “Harder Better Faster Stronger”

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