Making S.M.A.R.T. New Year's Goals
Happy New Year! A new year often prompts new goals, new things to try, and the overall sense of trying to become a better version of yourself. It can be a lot of pressure when your list of goals is longer than your holiday shopping list. The key to making goals you can stick with is to create realistic resolutions that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely, or SMART.
- To break that down into each step, here’s what each letter of the acronym means:
- Specific – A specific goal is simple and strategic. It’s something you can easily conceptualize.
- Measurable – A measurable goal is quantified. You’ll be able to see if you’re making progress as you go.
- Achievable – An achievable goal is realistic and attainable. If you’ve never worked out before, or haven’t in a long time, a daily workout goal won’t likely be feasible or sustainable in the long run.
- Relevant – A relevant goal needs to make sense or be appropriate to you. You want your goal to matter, so reflect on the past year about what’s working in your life and what’s not.
- Timely – A timely goal is accomplished within a specific time frame. You can adjust this period as needed, it is not set in stone.
If you have a much larger and vague goal, it’s easier to accomplish it if you break it down into smaller, more accomplishable goals. For example, if your goal is to eat healthier, break it down into something like having a veggie based meal once a week. You can always increase your goal or tweak it as the year goes on. To accomplish your resolutions, focus on one behavior at a time, that way, you slowly become the best version of yourself day after day. If you need help, talk about it. Reach out and ask for support from your friends and family. Never give up on yourself! It’s normal – and even good- to have goals and try to improve. Everyone has goals they would like to achieve. Don’t give up on yours! Remember that New Years is not about accomplishing everything and becoming your best you overnight. Your goals also do not have to be only health related, so find what matters to you. It’s a time to reflect on your past year, and a promise to yourself to try to make this year better. Good luck and a very happy and healthy New Year to all of you!