Have you ever made a goal and not stuck to it? Are you where you wanted to be in life, in health, in your career?
Goal setting is a process that can support achievement of your aims and ambitions and can assist to turn them into reality.
We discuss goal setting with our clients regularly as they know what they want for their health and as naturopaths, we assist them towards achieving their goals and supporting them along the process.
So What is Goal Setting?
Goal setting is sitting down and formalising the process of achieving your goal over a series of steps. Setting goals can be done for short term goals or long term goals, and it doesn’t need to be related to health.
Step 1. - Identify your goal
What is it that you want to achieve?
It can be as simple as wanting to eat more vegetables or it could be a little more tricky such as you want to be promoted at your work in the next 2 years.
Step 2. - List your reasons for wanting to achieve the goal.
This is helpful for later down the line being able to remind yourself why you wanted to achieve the goal and also clarifies the importance of the goal.
Step 3. - List your goal in S.M.A.R.T. format.
S.M.A.R.T. stands for:
Specific - ensure you have a defined end point or target. Vague goals are difficult to achieve if you do not know what it is that you want to achieve.
Measurable - attach a way to measure your goal to be able to check progress.
Achievable - based on your abilities, is it achievable? You may surprise yourself, but also be realistic, it’s not fair to put unrealistic pressure on yourself to achieve a goal.
Relevant - is this goal aligned with your other goals? If achieving one goal is at the detriment of you achieving another goal, you will not be able to complete one or both.
Timely - defining an end point or due date. This is so the goal is not never-ending and it gives you the opportunity to complete the task. Sometimes, goals without an end point can continue to linger in the background and not be achieved due to a lack of urgency.
Step 4. - Break your goal down.
All goals whether short or long term need to be broken down into smaller goals or To-Do steps that will keep you on track to achieving your ultimate goal.
For example, if it is wanting to eat more vegetables, your smaller goals may be:
- find some vegetable recipes you want to try
- plan out your meals for the week
- write a shopping list
- purchase more vegetables than currently purchasing from farmers market/supermarket/fruit and veg shop
- wash and prepare vegetables
- spend one evening a week cooking a few meals with extra veggies
- eating a minimum of one vegetable based meal daily
Step 5. - Prioritise your goals.
Majority of people have goals that they want to achieve in a range of areas within their lives. Focus on a maximum of 3 at a time to ensure your priorities are set and you have a clear path.
By prioritising your smaller goals, you are setting up your action plan and organising your path to success.
Step 6. - Stay motivated.
Keep your eye on Step 1. By ticking off your smaller goals from Step 3, you are getting closer to your final goal!
All steps lead to progress so keep pushing on.
If struggling with motivation, return to why you wantied to set the goal in the first place and if need be, adapt your goal to make it more relevant to you right now as life is adaptable and flexible so sometimes goals need to be adapted to where life is taking us.
By undertaking these steps, achieving your goal can be more achievable and less overwhelming!