The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” – Ayn Rand
On this marvelous Monday I ask you to challenge yourself by identifying one thing you want to do. Once you have identified it, set a goal and get to work. What’s stopping you? Who’s stopping you? Reality is, the only person holding you back is yourself.
When setting a goal, make sure it’s reasonable and attainable. Keep it simple so you don’t find yourself discouraged or disappointed. As a therapist, I teach SMART goals to help with good goal setting to avoid common errors. SMART goals are “smart”, but each letter represents something important.
Specific – This means the goal is to be very clear and concise. If you want to lose weight, don’t just say I want to lose weight, set a specific goal weight. If you want to travel, pick a destination and a date. Make it specific!
Measurable – If your goal is measurable, you should be able to answer the “how’s”. For example, if you’re going to set a goal to exercise, you may want to consider how often, how long, or how many times a week. The reason you want a measurable goal is because it makes it easier to observe when it has been accomplished.
Attainable – The worst thing you can do is set a goal that isn’t attainable. Start small, and then work your way up. Instead of setting a goal of losing 50 lbs, set goals in 5-10 lb increments. If you’re setting a goal of travelling to Paris, consider starting with the goal of researching. Once you’ve researched, start planning; then start saving and booking. People have much greater success when they start with smaller goals that are attainable. If you set your goals too high, it’s easy to get discouraged early in the game.
Relevant – When evaluating whether or not your goal is relevant, you may want to consider if it is worthwhile. Weigh the pros and cons. Is it something that will add to your overall life or happiness? It’s also important to ask yourself if it’s the right time. For example, starting a goal to lose weight the day before Christmas isn’t exactly a recipe for success.
Time-bound – Give yourself a time frame. Don’t be afraid to set target dates. If you miss them, set new ones. People tend to have greater success towards a goal if they set out to accomplish it within a certain time. Setting a time frame will keep you focused and allow you to adjust accordingly.
I encourage you to take some time today and think about your goals. Set some SMART goals and get to work! Who’s going to stop you?