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2017-01-06 00:13:37
Is your New Year's resolution S.M.A.R.T?

 

            The greatest thing about the New Year is that it gives us all a clean slate and allows us to make goals to challenge us and help us grow throughout the upcoming year. It is an exhilarating time of year to change unhealthy habits and start new ones. It is also a great time to try new hobbies and accomplish a long term goal you may have had. We all make New Year’s resolutions, but how many of us stick to them longer than a month? The most important thing to remember when creating a goal or a New Year’s resolution is remember the acronym “SMART”. Make a SMART goal and you will be more likely to accomplish it. The acronym SMART stands for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time bound. Your goal should be clear and specific or else it may be difficult to focus your efforts or feel motivated to achieve it.

 

Example: Imagine that your goal is to buy a house. Using the S.M.A.R.T acronym we can draw or map out a plan to help achieve this goal.

 

  1. Specific: One specific goal could be, “I will try and get out of debt to free up income and save more money for my future home.” being specific about a goal can help you to not be too overwhelmed.

 

  1. Measureable: It is important to be able to measure or track the progress of your goal so that you can stay motivated. A measurable goal here could be listing your debts from smallest to largest by the amount owed. Check off each debt when it is completely paid off. By doing this, you’ll be able to measure the success of your goal.

 

  1. Attainable: Your goal needs to be realistic and attainable in order for it to be successful. Ask yourself how realistic is this goal, based on other constraints and what financial factors are going to play a role in making this goal attainable. You may need to ask yourself if budget cuts in other areas such as vacations, or fun money are needed in order to relieve your debt.

 

  1. Relevant: This step is about making sure your goal matters to you. We all need support and assistance in achieving our goals, but it is also important that we continue to have control over them. In this case, ask yourself whether getting out of debt seems worthwhile and whether now is the right time to do it. It may be difficult at the moment to pay off debt, but it is also good to focus on the peace and stress-release you will feel in the future when it comes time to purchase that home you have always wanted.

 

  1. Time bound: Every goal needs a target date. This allows you a deadline time to focus on and this gives you something to work toward as well. Perhaps you can make a goal to get out of debt in 6 months, 1 year, 2 years, etc. Whatever time you choose, make sure it is a realistic one. When you give yourself a realistic time frame for accomplishing your smaller goals, it makes it easier to accomplish your final objective.

 

In conclusion, SMART can be a very effective tool that can provide clarity, focus, and motivation to help you achieve your goals. It’s important to choose goals that are measurable, specific, and relevant to you.

 

Source: SMART Goals: How to Make Your Goals Achievable. (n.d.). Retrieved January 06, 2017, from https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/smart-goals.htm

 

 

 
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