5 Steps in Setting Goals Effectively

smart goals examples

5 Steps in Setting Goals Effectively


July is fast approaching and we are officially halfway through the year! Many of us have started this year with a set of goals and new year’s resolutions. A big pat-in-the-back for those who stayed on track but if you fell off your “goals” wagon, you’ve come to the right place!

Finishing your year strong is just as important as starting it strong! And July is the perfect month to re-evaluate your goals and make adjustments. In this blog post, you will learn how to set goals effectively! You will also be able to write a formal written goal statement.

I highly recommend that you block out a few hours (or an entire day) before continuing. Go to a quiet and comfortable place where you can allow your mind to roam freely. Goal-setting begins with what you can dream of and for this to happen, you need to create or be in a space that is conducive to daydreaming.

Bring a notepad and handwrite your thoughts instead of using your phone. Physical is memorable and the act of physically writing your goals makes it personal. You can always type your goals on your phone once you’re done.

One of my biggest takeaway from the late Stephen Covey is by starting with the end in sight! It simply means to start by imagining the PERFECT result! This is where you need to let your mind be free and imagine what it would be like to achieve your intentions without limiting yourself. Opposite of the Murphy’s Law, everything that can work, will work! If the universe absolutely conspired in your favor, what would it be like to achieve your dream?

An effective goal has to serve your why or purpose. Otherwise, it will be a random achievement that doesn’t necessarily enrich your life. Let’s start by examining what your life vision is. And don’t worry, my vision has changed as I matured and yours might too. What’s important is to have a baseline idea of what you want out of life in the end!You might ask how does this relate to the goal I want to set right now? As mentioned earlier, the bigger the why, the bigger the how! Goals that are rooted in your why or life vision have a deeper reason to succeed. So let’s dig a little deeper!

The following exercise is the same one I’ve done while reading the book 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey. Find a quiet place and sit comfortably. Close your eyes if you need to. Imagine walking the down the aisle of your own funeral. You look both to the left and the right aisles and see familiar faces. Some are close friends and families and some are acquaintances. There will be 4 people giving your eulogy – a close family member, a close friend, a close associate and a member of your community.

Imagine what you WANT each of them to say about you. Next, ask yourself what legacy you want to leave with. What types of accomplishments and experiences did you want to have?

Whew! I know that was a lot to take on! You can do this exercise again later if you were feeling a little lost! Now, let’s set some goals! Don’t forget to pin this post to come back to later on!

Notice that this goal is specific ($50k monthly), measurable by its dollar amount, achievable (not too far-fetched and doable for my line of work as achieved by many bloggers that inspires me), has a deadline (December 2021) and relevant to my life vision as a platform to earn income, inspire others and live the adventure.

A timeline is essential to an effective road map to success. Road maps break the goal down to smaller goals (micro-goals) in a linear timeline setting. Much like what we did earlier, beginning with the end in mind is the next step in creating your road map. Taking the example in step 2, the desired end result is earning $30,000 per month by December 2021. Start creating the road map with this goal and break it down to micro monthly goals.Here’s an example of an effective road map to success:

The trick to creating an effective roadmap is by breaking down the goal into smaller manageable goals with a monthly or weekly deadline. If the breakdown of your goal seems too hard to reach then consider maybe tweaking your goal to be more achievable! If the micro-goals are too hard to achieve then most likely your main goal is even farther! Remember that success is a habit! To achieve your goal, you have to get in the habit of achieving your micro-goals daily/weekly.


Now that you have a roadmap to success, it’s time to create an action plan. Since your goal has been broken down to micro-goals, it’s easier to create an action plan for each month. Note that the action you need to take to reach your goal may be different from what you first planned for.


So there you have it. That’s the six step goal setting process you can use to begin the pursuit of your goal. Using this process of steps will help you to build the foundations for goal achievement. However, to attain your goal will no doubt take considerable hard work and persistent effort. It will in fact take massive consistent action on your part.

You can do all the necessary groundwork beforehand, but unless you actually fully commit yourself to seeing this through till the very end, then you have absolutely no hope of bringing your goal to life. Without commitment your goal will remain all but a wish that you hope to one day bring to fruition.

Six Step Goal Setting Process

Imagine for a moment you could develop new habits and methods of thinking where you naturally and effortlessly adopt these ideas into your life. How would that make you feel? Would you feel more fulfilled, empowered and in control?

Yes, there is such simplicity within this IQ Doodle, but of course there is a reason for that. Making positive change doesn’t need to be a complicated process. It just needs to be a consistent process where we progressively develop new habits-of-mind through repeated exposure and implementation. And that’s what these IQ Doodles are for.

We have prepared for you an IQ Doodle pack that includes several variations of this IQ Doodle that you can use for guidance and inspiration throughout the day. Use it consistently and you will begin making positive changes in the way you live, work and interact with others.

Set goals that are timely

Every set goal should be grounded within a time frame. Without a time frame, there is no sense of urgency. Make a tentative plan of everything you do and the time in which you want to do it. Instilling deadlines will help you and your team work towards them, creating motivation that can keep morale high. However, creating time frames can be a tricky and sensitive task. On the one hand, being too stringent on the timely aspect of goal setting can motivate, but it can also have the opposite effect, demotivating if you aren’t ticking the boxes on schedule.

When you are working towards a goal, things are bound to get tough. When facing adversity, you have to hold yourself accountable. Telling your family and friends about your goals may give you the responsibility you need, helping you gather the support system to give you a push. If you remain accountable in your everyday life, you will also surround yourself with constant encouragement from those who are following your progress.

Common SMART goal mistakes

This is the most common example of a SMART goal mistake. How can you know if you’re being too vague? Look out for phrases like “get better at,” “improve” and “help.” While improvement is the ultimate goal, you need to be more specific about what you’re improving or helping. And always include measurable benchmarks or “key performance indicators,” as they’re called in business.

The sole answer to “ Why are SMART goals important ?” is that they help you achieve your dreams. If you’re setting goals that don’t inspire you, you’ll never reach them, even if they follow the SMART formula. As Tony says, “People are not lazy. They just have impotent goals – that is, goals that do not inspire them.” If this sounds like you, it’s time to reexamine your blueprint and reset your goals.

Growth is addictive . It causes us to have bigger and bigger dreams – and there’s nothing wrong with that. Just remember to break those big dreams down into achievable chunks. At the same time, you can also set goals that are too attainable. SMART goals are all about finding the balance between “too difficult” and “too easy” so that you’re able to grow without getting discouraged.

why are smart goals important

SMART goal setting FAQS

1. Why use SMART goals?

Creating an extraordinary life doesn’t happen instantly. Our deepest dreams can take years to achieve – or even a lifetime. SMART goals set measurable criteria so that you can see the progress you’re making. They give you attainable benchmarks, allowing you to celebrate your successes along the way and stay inspired to keep going.

2. How do I set goals that really matter?

Put the SMART goals acronym into action. SMART goal setting starts with choosing the right objectives. Jay Abraham says that making more money is not a goal – it’s a wish or a dream. And as we learned in the “S” of the SMART goals format, setting specific goals is key. Don’t just say, “I want to make more money.” Know why you want to make more money and how you’re going to get there.

To set SMART goals that will change your life when you achieve them, you need to focus on what is currently not working in your life. Is your disconnected relationship causing you distress? Is your unhealthy lifestyle zapping your energy so you can’t enjoy life? Once you know what’s not working, you can use the SMART goals acronym to address these areas of your life.

3. What happens if I get off track?

Setting SMART goals is not about perfection – it’s about progress. You’re going to fail to follow through, you’re going to pursue goals that end up being off-base, and sometimes you’re going to fall flat on your face. That’s when it’s vital to go back to the beginning of the SMART goal setting process and make tweaks to improve the system. As Tony Robbins reminds us, “Remember, you’re always managing two businesses : the business you’re in, and the business you’re becoming.” Balancing these two realities can be challenging, but when you engage in the fundamentals of setting goals in the SMART goal format, you will be able to get back on track.

4. Why am I not accomplishing my SMART goals?

If you’re not accomplishing personal or professional SMART goals , you’ve probably done one of two things: chosen the wrong goals or failed to do each step of the SMART goal-setting process. There’s also a third possibility: You were meant to not achieve the goal because something better was waiting. When you view life as happening for you instead of to you, the meaning of “failure” can change to “opportunity.”

5. What’s the average time frame for SMART goals?

While SMART goals can be tracked over any time frame, one year is the most common. This gives you plenty of time to put a self-improvement plan in place and make adjustments if one part of the plan doesn’t work. If you’re the impatient type, you’re going to have to dig a little deeper and find patience.

Whether you’re setting professional SMART goals or personal goals, steady progress over time is your ideal outcome. As Jay Abraham observes, “Get your business to work harder for you or you’re going to work harder for it.” Remember, SMART goals are focused on achieving real results, and your ultimate achievement will be when your business is more efficient and demands less of you.

6. Is it best to do the SMART goal setting process alone?

One of the keys to achieving any goal is surrounding yourself with like-minded, supportive people. Get your friends, family members and colleagues on board with your SMART goals . If you really want to accelerate your growth, work with mentors or hire a Results Coach who can help you on your quest.

SMART goals are just the beginning – you can change your life one step at a time. It starts now, with pen and paper, reflection and the SMART goal-setting format. It’s time for you to begin. Get the support you need by attending Unleash the Power Within , a powerful event that teaches you how to connect with your ultimate purpose and develop an actionable plan to reach your goals.



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