Setting SMART goals - Undergrad Success

Setting SMART goals

Setting SMART goals
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Having difficulty of setting your goals in life? This article is for you.
Let’s first define the acronym SMART. S stands for Specific, M for Measurable, A for Attainable, R for Relevant, and T for Timely.


It is the Who, What, When, Where, Which, Why, and How of the SMART model.  A specific goal has a much greater chance of being accomplished than a general goal. It has to be well-defined and focused.


You have to measure your goal for you to be able to manage it. Put concrete numbers in your goals to know if you’re falling behind or if you’re on track. Set a daily reminder to track and measure your progress. And ask questions such as:

o   How much?
o   How many?
o   How will I know when it is accomplished?
o   What is at the finish line?


Dream big and aim for the stars but keep one foot firmly based in reality. There should be a realistic chance that a goal can be accomplished. This does not mean or imply that goals should be easy. On the contrary, a goal should be challenging. It should be set by or in concert with the person responsible for its achievement.

To determine whether your goal is attainable, ask yourself honestly if you believe you can achieve it and have all the resources (including time) available to make it happen.  Do you have (or will you be able to obtain) all the support, equipment, knowledge and resources needed to put your goals into action? Does this goal fall in line with your other priorities in life? If not, how can you revise your goal to make it more realistic?


Make the goal relevant to your life’s reality. You need to make sure that you’re choosing a goal that fits you and your lifestyle. Don’t choose a goal out of guilt, or just because someone else thinks it’s something you “should” do. Pick something that is meaningful and relevant to you and you’ll set yourself up for success. Set the bar high enough for a satisfying achievement!


Ground the goal within a TIME FRAME. SMART goals should be time-bound, meaning they should have a deadline or there should be a date for completion. Setting a deadline reinforces the seriousness of the goal in your mind. It motivates you to take action. When you don’t set a timeline, there is no internal pressure to accomplish the goal, so it gets put in the back burner.

If you don’t set a time, the commitment is too vague and it will be difficult to know how to pace yourself to reach your goal. It tends not to happen because you feel you can start at any time. Without a time limit, there’s no urgency to start taking action.

Time must be measurable, attainable and realistic.

If you’re looking for more information on SMART goals check out this fantastic books:


S.M.A.R.T. Goals Made Simple: 10 Steps to Master Your Personal and Career Goals
S.M.A.R.T. Goals Made Simple - 10 Steps to Master Your Personal and Career GoalsAuthor:
S.J. Scott

“Do you often set goals that you never seem to reach? We’re all filled with dreams and aspirations. Most long for fulfilling relationships. Some desire personal freedom. Others want fame and success. And some strive for profitable businesses. Wherever your ambitions may lie, goal setting can get you there. On the other hand, the wrong goal can leave you feeling frustrated and unmotivated. When you set a goal that’s too lofty, it’s easy to give up when your dreams don’t turn into reality. We all have important milestones we’d like to reach. The trick is to create a plan and commit to it. Setting S.M.A.R.T. goals can help you do this. .” – Amazon Book Description


SMART Goals: The Ultimate Goal Setting Guide
SMART Goals - The Ultimate Goal Setting GuideAuthor:
Jacob Gudger

“In “SMART Goals: The Ultimate Goal Setting Guide” you’ll learn:
-What SMART Goals actually means and learn the simple method for setting them.
-Dozens of examples of SMART Goals from other achievers.
-How to know if your goals are SMART Goals. And if they’re not learn how to change them.
-How smart goals increase your chances of increasing ROI in business and life.
-How to use smart goals in every area of life.
-How to push (inspire) yourself to reach your goals.
-How to stay calm, productive, and relaxed as you work towards them..” – Amazon Book Description


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Jenny is currently studying Information Technology at Mindanao State University - Iligan Institute of Technology. She's now in her senior year and her field of specialization is Database Systems. She's a movie junkie, likes to cook and teach. She also loves to eat but she never over-indulges. In her free time she enjoys playing piano.

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