How SMART Are Your Goals?

Celebrity Trainer Heidi Powell recommends SMART Goal Setting

We all have goals, right? I know I do. And there?s nothing quite like the awesome feeling that comes from reaching a goal and finally being able to say, ?I did it!?

Unfortunately, some goals are harder to achieve than others, and these goals are usually the ones that are the most important to us.

?I want to lose weight? is an example of a very common?and important?goal. It?s the goal of all of our transformation clients, as well as many of our Facebook friends. It?s one of the top New Year?s Resolutions every single year.

So why is this goal?and others like it?so hard to achieve? The main reason is this type of goal is not a SMART goal. It?s too vague and open-ended. It?s a really nice wish, but the chances of making this wish into a reality are pretty slim.

In order to be considered SMART, a goal must have these five components:

? Specific
? Measurable
? Attainable
? Relevant
? Time-bound

So how does this process work? Let?s change ?I want to lose weight? into a smaller, more focused SMART goal.

Specific: The questions ?how,? ?what,? and ?when? are answered in this step. ?How? will you lose weight? ?What? will you do to lose weight? ?When? will you do it? This is a specific goal that answers all these questions: ?I will lose 6 pounds in 6 weeks. I will accomplish this by consuming 1500 calories per day and by exercising at least 5 minutes 5 days a week.? Now that?s specific! (I can hear you asking, ?Heidi, only 5 minutes a day?? Yes. That?s the type of promise you make to yourself. Stay with me and it will all make sense ?).

Measurable: To achieve a goal you have to be able to regularly measure your progress. Numbers don?t lie, and they can keep you moving in the right direction or help you refocus your efforts. To make this goal measureable, let?s add, ?I will weigh myself every Monday morning and I will record my progress.?

Attainable: A successful goal must be attainable?not too difficult?or you?re setting yourself up for failure from day one. Yes, you could make a goal to exercise 5 days a week for 30 minutes, but let?s be honest: sometimes life gets in the way and the best plans go out the window, and then you feel like a failure. Make your goal attainable?one you can keep every single day?and you?ll be well on your way to success. You?ll love those daily feelings of accomplishment so much that you might even do more than you?ve promised yourself you?d do (like exercising more than 5 minutes a day)!

Relevant: Make sure your SMART goal is important enough that you?ll want to make the necessary changes and sacrifices to achieve it. Like Chris says, ?Make sure that for you, the juice is worth the squeeze!? (He?s handsome, brilliant and witty!)

Time-bound: A SMART goal must have a time limit so you won?t get sidetracked and not accomplish your goal. A 6-week limit makes this goal time-bound.

Another important aspect of SMART Goals is how they’re stated. You don’t say “I want to,” or “I’ll try”; you say, “I will.” Something as simple as stating “I will” commits you to reaching that goal. It gets rid of the wiggle room.

Once you achieve your first SMART goal, you?ll be ready to set and reach another one, and then another one, and so on until you reach your ultimate goal.

There?s no stopping you now!



Related reading:

Reignite Your Fire to Achieve Your Goals!
The Procrastinator?s Guide to Transforming Your Time Management Skills
12 Lessons Failure Taught Me
Just say NO! My Less Is More Resolution
5 Life Lessons from a Boss Babe

30 Responses

  1. I am re-watching this years episodes On Demand. The promise to myself really gave me an ah ha moment. Reviewing the SMART goal/promise and for years and years of goal setting, writing them out visualizing etc…pictures, time bound. Since I was 29 (I am 45 now!) I have been focused on goal setting, written, pictures, affirmations, rampages of appreciation. HERE IS THE MISSING PIECE for me- “R” for Relevant. In all five areas of my life the goals achieved easiest for me were Career/Financial. My WHY is missing!!!!! WHY do I want to so lose specific amount of weight and inches? For 16 years my WHY has been missing when it relates to my weight. Thank you both for all you do. Love your show. Already pre-ordered your book.
    Working on my why,

  2. Thank you Heidi! You and Chris really helped me to finally see my dietary change and sport goals through. One of the things that helped me the most, was to include the treats in my plan (like your morning bun). This way I don’t feel like I broke my promise and I’m more motivated to keep on.

  3. I have asked my best friend to join me in my goal of hiking up a steep mountain that is 2,830 stairs up a mountain & we have trained for it & the support helps alot & knowing I can reach these goals motivates me more.My girls are my major push to get in shape because they deserve a healthy mommy ..Jody Boundy

  4. Almost 2 months ago I facebooked Chris because I couldn’t figure out why I couldn’t lose weight. I still haven’t been able to get his book, but I set a running goal for myself and accomplished it. By reaching that goal, I finally started to lose weight. I weigh myself on Mondays and Thursdays and as of last week, I’d lost 15 pounds. I also started keeping a food journal again and that has been a help, too.

  5. For me my goal is to exercise 3 times a week. In addiction to that my goal is enough water and food.

  6. I am learning all about SMART goals as I study for my CPT exam- you inspire me to be a great trainer, you and Chris are definitely my role models!!

  7. Hi Heidi,
    This has really hit home for me in a BIG way. I start out with a plan and then I sabotage myself and have a pity party for one. However, I know that I am worth making a positive change. For our new school year, I want to take the SMART plan, make it relevant to my classroom/students and then I will be living it everyday and modelling it to my students.

  8. I like the 5 minutes of exercise a day vs 5 days a week goal. This will help my goal settung coming up at the beginning of September, the end of my current 6 week challenge and on to another, better set goals 6 weeks! Chad Crystal Froemming on Facebook.

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