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Do you think about setting goals for yourself? If you have, how long did you stick to them? If sticking to your goals does not last long, consider why. Are they realistic? Are they sustainable? Do you have the ability to fulfill the goals?

One framework for setting sustainable goals is by following the SMART framework: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time Based. Does your goal fit into this framework? If not, how can you make it fit? Or do you need to modify your goal?

Goals can be ordinary. Let’s face it, during the pandemic, showering and dressing every day may have been a goal for you! Or, getting up from the computer to take an actual break. Think about what you would like to improve such as flossing your teeth more often, expressing a more positive attitude, practicing gratitude through journaling, or dedicating one night a week to family time. Setting goals, even small ones, gives you something to work toward and can provide short-term motivation.

If increasing your movement is a goal you would set for yourself, rather than declaring you will exercise every day of the week for 60-minutes a day, consider the goal of how you personally can define increasing your movement.

A sample goal related to increasing movement could look like this:

Specific – I want to increase my movement by taking a 20-minute walk, 3 times a week

Measurable – I will add this to my calendar and cross it off when I finish my walk, this will motivate me to do this, and it allows me to see progress

Attainable – I have proper shoes for walking, and I can walk 20 minutes

Relevant – This goal is important to me because I have been more sedentary during the pandemic and while working from home

Timely – My goal is to do this for one month

Setting goals can help individuals make improvements to their daily lives. They can relate to small changes you want to make which will have better sticking power. And once you meet a smaller goal or two, you may be motivated to make bigger goals and life improvements!

“I’m big on setting goals, but I also think that if you have too many lofty ambitions, and set goals for everything, you can sabotage your efforts by overextending your brain.”

Jean Chatzky, CEO of HerMoney


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