Starting Fall SMART
Fall is the time to set goals! Goals help us make positive changes in our day-to-day lives that move us towards our hopes for the future. Goals are like a map – they guide us. They provide us with a sense of ease and comfort knowing we have a plan. Setting them gives us an opportunity to reflect and prioritize what we find most meaningful. Goals that we share and work on with our family, friends or colleagues can also build stronger relationships and closer connections.
Goal setting should not have to be an overwhelming or leave us feeling “trapped,” which is why many reframe it and call it “intention” setting. Intention is rooted in our beliefs and values but focus on present actions rather than far-off outcomes. Whether we set goals or intentions, we need to give ourselves the freedom to change our minds and adjust our goals as we move towards them.
One tool that can support your process in setting goals is using the SMART strategy.
· Specific – What exactly would you like to do? What is your aim?
· Measurable – How will you know if you are moving towards your goal? What will you see?
· Achievable – Can you act to reach your goal? Is it something you can do?
· Relevant – Does this goal have meaning for you?
· Time – When would you like to reach this goal?
All parts of our lives can benefit from setting meaningful goals. Here are a few ideas on where you could get started today:
· Attitude (Ex. Being positive, hopeful, and grateful or seeing the good)
· Physical Health (Ex. Being active, eating healthy food, sleeping, and drinking water)
· Relationships (Ex. Spending more time with family and friends)
· Public Service (Ex. Volunteering, helping your community)
Taking the time to write, type, or vocalize our goals, it will set the stage for us to reach them! Another important piece of the puzzle is to celebrate our successes along the way. Focus on all that you have done rather on things you still need to do.
Remember to be kind to yourself. This is a good year to think about what is important and fall gently back into our routines again!