Friday, May 6, 2011

Motivate Yourself With SMART Goals!

Hi Searching for Serendipity Readers!  I'm Melissa from The Scarlet Cardinal and I am thrilled to be guest posting for you all today!

Springtime is a wonderful time of year, (especially once I get past the worst of my itchy eyes, runny nose, and other allergies!)  With all the flowers and leaves reappearing I can't help but think about new life, fresh starts, and vibrant beginnings.  I know that everyone makes New Year's resolutions, but for me springtime is when I really kick into high gear as I vision what I want the rest of the year to bring.

I am highly motivated by goals--if you saw the number of lists I make each day you'd either be totally in awe, or completely freaked out.  Either way, it works for me, and apparently lots of other folks too.  I've seen a lot of 101 in 1001 lists going around lately.  Mine is an 11 in 11 and knowing that I'm already making some headway (scuba lessons this month...booyah!) is very energizing!

So the fact that I'm a goal-oriented person, and the fact that it's spring, has lead me to begin thinking about my own goal-setting and what new opportunities are out there.
Many of you, I'm sure have heard of SMART Goals:

By following the accronym when creating goals you can be thoughtful and intentional about creating goals that will help motivate you, and that will be rewarding when achieved.  So rather than saying--I want to lose weight--your goal might look like this:  I will lose 15 lbs in the next six months.

This goal is both specific (15lbs) and measurable (assuming you weight yourself regularly).  It is attainable since six months is a very reasonable amount of time to lose that amount of weight based on the 1.5-2lbs per week that is generally agreed upon as a healthy weight loss.  It is relevant as long as you are not already underweight, and the 6 month limit makes it time-bound.

All of these criteria help you stick to your goal, make it difficult to find a way out of it (chocolate cake anyone?), and easy to evaluate your progress.

I have applied this technique to every goal whether it is professional or personal and it always helps keep me honest and on track.  By publishing my goals on my blog it also motivates me to finish my list--and the feedback from others is a fantastic way to assess whether a goal is right for me.

I encourage you all to make goals, shoot for the stars, and dream big.  Find out what lights your fire and let it burn, baby!  And share what you're reaching for with others.  We can help support each other and connect one another to success.


 So what are your goals?  Are they SMART? and how do you use them to stay motivated?

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