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Are Your Goals S.M.A.R.T. ?

So you’ve got dreams, and you want to turn them into goals and see them come to life.

But goals can be intimidating. If they’re big goals they may seem unreachable or even impossible. You may want to quit before you even get started.

This is why your goals need to be S.M.A.R.T.

Now I’m not suggesting that your goals have an IQ or that they are good or bad. S.M.A.R.T. is a formula of sorts that not only helps you reach your goals, but also determine if your goals are realistic — reachable!

Here’s the formula:

SMARTReally, this formula isn’t any different from making a “To-Do” list.

For example, when you list things you want to accomplish in a weekend most likely they meet each of these criteria.

Let’s look at them in a little more detail:

SPECIFICAnswer the six “W” Questions
*Who:      Who is involved? 
*What:     What do I want to accomplish? 
*Where:    Identify a location. 
*When:     Establish a time frame. 
*Which:    Identify requirements and constraints. 
*Why:      Specific reasons, purpose or benefits of   accomplishing the goal.

MEASURABLEEstablish concrete criteria for measuring progress toward the attainment of each goal you set.
Ask Yourself:
How will I know when it is accomplished?

When you identify goals that are most important to you, you begin to figure out ways you can make them come true.

You develop the attitudes, abilities, skills, and financial capacity to reach them.

You begin seeing previously overlooked opportunities to bring yourself closer to the achievement of your goals.

REALISTICTo be realistic, a goal must represent an objective toward which you are both willing and able to work.

A goal can be both high and realistic; you are the only one who can decide just how high your goal should be. 

TIME-BOUNDA goal should be grounded within a time frame.

With no time frame tied to it there’s no sense of urgency.

A “To-Do” List consists of specific tasks that can realistically be accomplished in a day, weekend, etc.


Grander goals usually require a longer time-period and may need a few smaller goals to reach them.

Let me share with you one of my grand goals for this year – to lose 54 pounds by the end of the year. Now we’ll break it down:

Specific – 54 pounds, or approx 1 pound/week
Measurable – Measure by weighing-in every week
Attainable – By changing eating habits and increasing exercise.
Realistic – The number fits within a healthy weight for my body-type so it is realistic.
Time-Bound – The ultimate time-frame is 12 months and the smaller time-frame is 1 pound/week or 5 pounds/month

This is not an easy goal and the big number looks very difficult to attain. Breaking it down to weekly/monthly goals makes it less intimidating and by keeping my eyes on the smaller ‘prize’ will make me more likely to stick with it.

To help me reach this huge goal I am also setting goals related to exercise, spiritual ‘fitness’ and encouragement to compliment it.

I actually believe there is a piece missing in the S.M.A.R.T. formula and think we need to make our goals S.M.A.R.T.eR

The R is for Reward

Sometimes reaching the ultimate goal is not reward enough and we need some encouragement along the way. Rewarding ourselves for sticking to the new disciplines required to reach our goals and encourage us along the way.

I have developed a goal worksheet that I use when setting goals. If you’d like a copy, comment here, or e-mail me at I’ll be glad to share them.

Goals can be fun to make and when they are attainable (even with some hard work sometimes) we are more likely to find success.

What are your goals for the year? Share them here, or at my author Facebook page:

There I will provide tips for sticking with our goals and encouragement that I find along the way.  Together we can accomplish our goals and bring more peace to our puzzle called life.

blessings & peace to you!

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It’s the first day of 2013 and the day of resolutions. As we flip the calendar page many of us will resolve to change our lives and our outlook. We will vow to eat better, exercise more, criticize less and overall have a positive attitude about life and those we love.

Looking ahead and resolving to make changes is a good thing. But it’s not enough. For better success we need to turn our resolutions into goals.

A resolution is a statement. A goal is a plan.

Goals are putting action to what we resolve to do. Instead of resolving to exercise more we can make a plan to walk 3 days a week at lunchtime. Or join a Zumba, Pilates, spinning or ______ class (fill in the blank with something you’ve always wanted to try). Be sure your goals are specific, manageable, achievable, realistic and time sensitive….or SMART! (we’ll talk more about this in future posts)

Are you overwhelmed already? Not sure where to start?

Don’t be in a hurry
Do set a deadline.

January 1st doesn’t need to be the day we start our goals for the New Year. We can make it the day we start seeking God’s will and make the start date a few weeks later. Take time to allow the Lord to direct you in your planning. 

1. PRAY – ask God

•For guidance
•For God’s will
•For His blessings to be on your plans.

Jeremiah 29:11
Proverbs 16:3
Proverbs 19:21

2. START – Just put something down

•Write down things that are in your heart
•Think about what will bring you closer to the person God wants you to be.
•How can you make ‘required’ areas into goals? (work, school, chores)

– Lay the goals you’ve set out before God

– Give God time to speak to you about your goals and whether He wants them to change.

Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.  James 1: 4-5

5. ADJUST – Make changes where needed

One of my downfalls each year is being overzealous in my goals. I want to set goals for so many areas of my life that I sometimes forget to ask the Lord if His desires are the same as mine. If not I need to humble myself before Him and make some changes.

Whatever your goals are for 2013 I want you to succeed!!

I’m no expert on goal planning, but am learning more and more each day. Each week of the new year I’m going to share with you a little of what I’ve learned and hope you’ll share as well. We can encourage each other as we set goals and as we work to achieve them.

May he give you the desire of your heart
and make all your plans succeed. Psalm 20:4

What are your New Year’s traditions? Do you make resolutions and set goals? How can we help you with them this year?

I hope you’ll join me on a journey to see the Lord’s plans succeed in our lives in 2013!

blessings & peace to you…