“You can’t manage what you can’t measure” is a great quote from Peter Drucker, a man best known for his written works on not only business management, but also personal life management as well.
Setting goals, whether it’s a daily to-do list, a monthly savings goal, or even a lifelong bucket list, can be tricky and should be done purposefully.
Following the SMART goal setting method is a great way to ensure that your goals are achievable and appropriate for you and your lifestyle.
Let’s break SMART down into its bare bones and look at different example of each aspect:
Specific → Describe your goal in as much detail as possible. Keep your focus on one goal at a time.
- Poor example: I want to lose weight
- Good example: I want to lose 10 pounds
- Great example: I want to lose 10 pounds of fat
Measurable → How will you measure what success looks like for this goal?
- Poor example: I will weigh myself on Jul 3, 2022
- Good example: I will keep track of my food
- Great example: I will journal all my meals, snacks, and water and log my exercises in my smartwatch
Attainable → Ensure you have all the resources and skills you need to make this goal possible
- Poor example: I will buy equipment to use at home
- Good example: On weekends, I will use the free-weights at the house to complete a 20-minute circuit
- Great example: On weekends, I will use the free-weights at the house for a 20-minute circuit then walk the dog for 30 minutes.
Relevant → Why is this goal important to you?
- Poor example: My doctor told me to lose weight
- Good example: I am tired when I walk up the stairs
- Great example: I have 4 grandchildren that I want to play and be involved with as they grow up.
Timely → Give yourself a deadline to complete this goal and be strict about it! Remember to be realistic.
- Poor example: I want to lose 10 pounds by tomorrow
- Good example: I want to lose 10 pounds in 3 weeks
- Great example: I want to lose 10 pounds in 2 months
The result? A detailed, realistic, and measurable goal that you have set in place.
Here’s an example with all aspects of the SMART principles put together:
I want to lose 10 pounds of fat in 2 months (July 4 2022). I will achieve this by going to the gym 3 times per week and using my free-weights at the house on the weekends to perform a 20-minute circuit and walk the dog for 30 minutes. To help me track my progress, I will journal all my meals, snacks, and water intake each day and log my exercises in my smartwatch. I want to lose 10 pounds so that I can play with my 4 grandchildren.
Setting goals following this principle removes all the guesswork about how you will make the goal possible.
You have the tools, now get out there and crush those goals.
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Rachel Palepale has been part of the First Capital Gym team since November 2021. She has been coaching since August 2021. She has a B.A. in Professional Writing.