Research shows us that 63% of those who set a goal are able to keep it after two months but only 15-20% are able to keep it after a year. Using SMART goals is a structured method that will increase your ability to keep your goals for a longer period of time. S stands for specific, M is measureable, A is attainable, R is realistic or relevant and T is timely. As tedious as it may seem at times, better success comes from making sure that your goal is very specific. A bad goal would be to say “I want to get in shape”. It is not specific and as such impossible to reach. At the same time, stating “I want to lose 25 pounds in four weeks” may not be realistic or even attainable. Making a goal to change your weight isn’t as effective as making a goal that results in a lifestyle change. Often times people report that their weight goes up and down over time. Sometimes this is due to setting a goal that results in short term change but not in something that will be a lifestyle change. To see if it is a lifestyle change you are attempting to make you should ask yourself, “Do I see myself doing this a year from now?”. If the answer is “Yes” it is, if not then it may only bring short term results. Everyone should have completed their goals. Be sure to share those goals with someone. Studies show us that if you declare your intent to others it will improve your chances of keeping the goal. Don’t forget to send me your goals. As you progress towards reaching your goals remember that it is not uncommon to experience moments where you revert back to old behaviors. Often people become discouraged at this point and give up on their goals. Plan to have setbacks – it’s natural. The key to success is to recognize when it is happening and to either return to your goals or adjust your goals so that they are more realistic. To ensure success make sure that you are not making changes for someone else. We know that goals are more effective when we do them for ourselves.
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