“SMART” goals are better than no goals. But not by much. While they do provide some clarity of what you’re trying to accomplish, they lack the powerful reason and emotions necessary to MAKE thing happen. Let’s fix them. Let’s make them smarter. Much much smarter.
First, what is a SMART goal?
The classic definition of a SMART Goal is:
- S = Specific
- M = Measurable
- A = Attainable
- R = Relevant
- T = Time bound
Example of a SMART goal: “To earn $200,000 in 2016.”
While goals like this may technically be SMART, they are not very inspiring. And your motivation runs on inspiration and strong emotions. We can do a LOT better than this weak statement above.
Let’s power-up your goals so you don’t have to constantly “push” so hard to attain them. Let’s set it up so you are “pulled” towards your goals. We’re going to do that by adding some strong emotions and developing a ton of reasons for accomplishing them.
Add these 6 items to any goal to maximize its effectiveness:
- Add powerful emotions to the goal.
- Write the goal in the past or present tense.
- As if its already happened and you are enjoying the accomplishment.
- Use “I” in the goal.
- You’re the one who’s making it happen. Step up and claim it for yourself.
- Have a LOT of written reasons for wanting to attain the goal, and the benefits of having accomplished it.
- A “lot” means a LOT. 25 minimum, 50 to 100 is better.
- The more emotionally charged reasons you have for attaining the goal the more likely you are to make it happen.
- Create an “I AM ….” Statement to support the goal.
- i.e., create a new persona for whom the goal is easy.
- Now DO something about it … NOW. I mean RIGHT NOW.
- NEVER leave the site of a goal without taking some action towards its accomplishment.
- Make a phone call, look something up, schedule something. Do SOMETHING to get started.
- Goals are attained through habits.
- Take action immediately to start building the habit.
Examples of ‘Smarter’ formatted goals
Let’s start with a fitness goal. It’s easier to understand the goal structure.
Goal Statement: (Notice the strong emotion of ‘incredibly proud’)
“I am incredibly proud to have completed the KC Marathon in October of 2016.”
- I said I would.
- I keep my promises to myself.
- It will cause me to adjust a number of other health habits.
- I’ll get to my ideal body weight.
- I’ll meet cool new (and crazy) people.
- My clothes will fit better.
- I’ll live longer. (Or not … but I’ll have more fun.)
- Etc., etc., etc.
Examples of “I AM ….” Statements that pull you in this direction.
- I AM an athlete.
- I AM strong, healthy, fit and disciplined.
- I AM a runner.
“Install” these “I AM …” statements through repetition. I.e., say them to yourself over and over and over again. Say them enough, and eventually even YOU will start to believe them. When you do … your behavior will change automatically. After all, the way an athlete eats, the way a runner exercises is very different than someone whose “I AM …” statement is “I AM always tired.” “I AM just lazy.”
Next Action Items:
- Sign up for the marathon online.
- Research and decide on a training plan to walk/run a 5K.
- Go get some running shoes.
Now you have a clear goal. With lots of emotions. That you are responsible for. That you’re envisioning as if it’s already been accomplished. You have a TON of reasons for doing it. You have a new personal identity statement beginning with “I AM ….” AND … you’ve already started.
It’s pretty darn likely you’re going to MAKE this goal happen.
Now let’s try a financial goal.
“I loved earning $200,000 by December 31st, 2016”
- I said so and I keep my promises to myself.
- I can get out of debt and buy that new house.
- My spouse will be incredibly proud of me.
- I’ll be showing (not just telling) my kids that anything is possible, and they can do it too.
- Because I want a new car.
- Etc., etc., etc.
“I AM ….” Statements to go along with this goal.
- I AM great with money and generating sustainable income.
- I AM fantastic at my job and will find more ways to make a massive contribution to my company.
- I AM highly creative and resourceful and will find many ways to earn extra income.
Next Action Items:
- Generate 10 ideas of how I can make more of a contribution at work.
- Generate 10 ideas of how I can make additional income.
- Make a list of 5 new skills I need.
- Find an online program to learn the first of those skills.
Now you try it.
- What’s your goal?
- Write it in the “smarter” format with powerful emotions.
- What are your compelling reasons? Lots and LOTS of reasons.
- What “I AM …” statements do you need to support it?
- What are your “Next Action” items to do immediately?
Now go MAKE it happen!
Want help setting and accomplishing your greatest goals in business and life? We help people do exactly that, and we are good at it. Really REALLY good at it.
We inspire, coach, and train entrepreneurs and business professionals to become the BEST version of themselves. And to make the MOST of their TIME, MONEY, ENERGY, and INNATE TALENTS to build their business FAST.
Contact us today. Let’s set up a 10-minute quick call to see if we can help you. No sales, just a chat. You and your dreams are worth it.
Aaron Brauch, Business Consultant & Coach
Helping Entrepreneurs Build Great Businesses & Live Outstanding Lives.
Contact me today to build the business & life of your dreams.