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How to Set Goals

by Anh LeTran

As somebody who gets distracted easily by my friends and family and work and school, goals are very important to keep myself on track and after much trial and error, I’ve found the SMART method to be the best.

Specific. Your goal is detailed and can answer the 5 questions: who, what, when, where, why, and which

Measurable. You should be able to track your goal progress using numbers.

Attainable. Make sure you can reasonably accomplish your goal within a certain timeframe.

Relevant. Your goals should align with your values and be worth your time.

Timely. Give yourself a deadline! This helps to stay focused and motivated.

Using the SMART method, your goals should be defined, achievable, and have a deadline.

Goals can be long term (over one year) or short term (less than one year). An example of common long-term benchmarks are 5 years out, 10 years out, and 20 years out. Common short-term benchmarks are one week, a month, or a year.

There are 5 categories I organize my life into: Health, Finances, Career, Spiritual Development, and Relationships.

Say you want to get on track financially, using the SMART method this goal might look like “I am going to create budgets every first weekend of the month.” This goal is specific and timely, a perfect example of a SMART goal.

You can create goals for every category of your life or a single category. Be wary that the more goals you have there harder it is to focus on any one goal.

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