SMART: Set your action plan in motion - a creative coaching technique for setting goals and achieving them.

Do you want to live your vision of success?

Do you want to accomplish your dreams? What do you want out of life?

How many of us want more, dream bigger, look for balance or advancement and are used to setting goals without them coming true?

If this is you, we would like to introduce you to a basic goal setting idea called SMART. Many consultants and coaches use this technique or approach to help clients realize their dreams by setting goals.

This acronym, SMART refers to the essential elements in goal setting that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic/Relevant and Time Framed. We want you to set your goals in a way that makes them well defined and clear.

If you follow these guidelines your chances of success will increase because you are using one of the most effective ways of formulating an action plan.

SMART goal setting can be applied for and within the creative process because we ask that you create a written plan.

In terms of coaching, SMART ask that you consider reasonable and measurable long and short-term objectives. You are held accountable!

SMART is a technique that adapts to your reality, your needs and your timeframe. You are the only person to know if your goal is SMART for you!! You can start by asking yourself what you want, and begin with a long-term, ‘by the end of the year’ type of statement.

Short-term goals follow: you can include, daily, weekly or monthly targets that will move you towards your reasonable goals.

This is your action plan; your road map.

And remember to be kind to yourself! SMART

Be Specific!!

A goal must be specific and not vague, “I’ll loose weight” versus “I’ll loose five pounds this month” Get detailed!!!

Clearly state what is to be achieved, by whom, where and when. IF necessary, state why the goal is important. Even if these questions may not apply to every goal, your task is to make your goal setting as clear as possible.

Make sure your goal is measurable!

A measurable goal provides concrete information, such as "I will present my product to three potential customers this week."

Quantifying the results, making them concrete is a definitive way to measure your success! Also, pose the question of quantity – how much, how often, how many? Your milestones are your personal roadmap that keep you on track in achieving your goals.

BE achievable!

Your goals must be achievable and therefore reasonable and do-able, not just practical.

You want to set your self up to succeed. You or your group need to have a buy in; need to believe it’s possible. Consider the time factor and your available resources.

BE realistic!
BE relevant!

Honestly evaluate yourself and make sure you don’t over do it. For example, if you are considering making a presentation to 200 people next week but you have difficulties and lack practice in public speaking, you might want to get some training and practice under your belt.

Having an action plan and getting realistic about your limitations is part of goal achievement, You set a more realistic time frame and foundation in your action plan so that you can succeed!! What is more realistic for you? In this case you might consider starting with a small group of 4 and gradually increasing your comfort level.

Your goal must be relevant to what you want to achieve and in line with your personal vision, mission and purpose. Think long-term and short term goals!

Have a Time Frame!!

Having a set amount of time gives your action plan structure, creates a sense of urgency and the impetus to act.

Talking about someday is not going to get you there, you need an end date, a deadline to measure and monitor your progress, to motivate you into action. Procrastination is a pitfall we are all too familiar with but deciding what you want to do and having an action plan will help you figure out the next steps. It is always better to have an action plan and to know what you need to do in order to get to where you want to be.

You can achieve and live a life of full potential!

And remember to be kind to yourself!